I thank you so much. It's so great to be back in Iowa. You know, we have great memories here of the many trips now that we've been blessed to take here. You know, of course, the '08 campaign. And then the even more fun Tea Party rally that we had in Indianola – that was fun. We've had…oh gosh…chowing down on fried everything at your state fair, of course.
And then, one year, thinking that, a bit after the fair, I was going to work some of it off, so we drive up to Storm Lake and I'm thinking…there was a half marathon going on…I'm thinking, hey, I could go incognito, I'm going to jump into this race, and… incognito, Latin, for me it means "no makeup"…I have…scare little children. So I'm running a race, I jump in there, and I'm incognito I'm thinking, I'm running in peace, you know, no one talking politics. Of course I’m sucking air the whole way so I can't talk anyway. But you know, no press there with those suspicious thinking of theirs…signals…you know, she's in Iowa, what is she doing? And it seems like the Iowa politicos, too, very good at sensing, you know, who's coming, who's going, and the significance of your state of course.
So anyway, I'm running, but no press kind of bugging me about, are you going to run for president or not, because that was the year of that question. So jumping in the race, I'm running, across the finish line, and boom! There I am accused of running that race for political purposes. And I find out, I find out that, okay, I'm in Iowa, the race happened to be called Storm Lake's Jump Right In and Run race. I got a medal! I jumped right in.
So, of course, the press is like, you orchestrated that. You know, you came all the way to Iowa for that race. And I'm like, oh yeah, ask Todd, you know, I'm the one who made him pull over that day to run the race.
Anyway, our best memories, though, are of the wonderful friends that we have made here, just, ah, good people, hard workers, with love for this great country, that, they show with, you know, your work ethic and with, shoot, even driving by your homes with the flags waving on front porches, where on any given night I think a whole lot of you might be found out there on your porch proudly clinging to your guns, your god, your Constitution. And it is because of that, because of you, that the rest of the country knows this part of America as the Heartland.
And last time I was here to campaign, it was for one of those friends whom we have made, and you know her as a soldier and a farmer and a good neighbor. And then, back then, I called her a pistol-packin', Harley-ridin' Mama Grizzly, and now I am thrilled to get to call her your senator, Joni Ernst.
Well, other friends, too. It was here in Iowa that I first met a big, burly bold but kind of sheepdog-humble type of guy, a guy who wanted to help us out with security, and so happy to get it bring him to Iowa and get to know him very well, 'cause he was a veteran and you know my heart for the military. He was incredibly humble and we became friends with him over the years; Todd and he especially becoming, becoming friends. We learned more and more about his amazing story and it is the story of so many of our vets, incredible sacrifice to protect our freedoms, and while we miss that particular friend now we are so happy that the rest of America is getting to know more and more the story of American sniper Chris Kyle. It was here it was here that we were introduced to Chris. And you know why that movie is breaking records all over this great nation. It's because America needs a hero again and Chris Kyle has been that man, and screw the left in Hollywood who can't understand what it is that we see in someone like Chris Kyle and all of our vets.
So the last couple days, my daughter Bristol and I we have been at a great big gun show in Las Vegas and there at the gun show at the SHOT Show, getting to link up with Taya, with Chris Kyle's wife, and Taya, throwing a big party there honoring vets, honoring those who have supported her cause now that Chris is gone and carrying on her husband's legacy, spending hours visiting with these vets and, and like most military families, having that that sincere appreciation for what other military families go through, so spending so much time with these other vets.
Well, at this party…. Man, it seems like we're always kinda going rogue or something, always happens when…. We're at the party and I'm with Taya, we're signing books, and in the back this this young, very energetic very bold young vet, he holds up a sign and it was a bold, four-letter letter message to Michael Moore that he'd written out. And I'm like, oh man, look it…. And I call him up front, you know. And he's holdin' the poster and I'm looking at it, he's showing it to me, and of course pictures started snappin', you know, 'cause I'm giving, I'm giving the poster the ole thumbs-up…and it was my thumb, you know, it wasn't any other finger, it was my thumb. Oh that poster, though, he, he, you've heard the term swear like a sailor even though I think this guy was a soldier, you know, same thing. Well, anyway, someone snapping that photo and…. We've taken a lot of heat over it the last two day for being seen with this photo with a four-letter message to Michael Moore that he deserves.
Well, I was thinking…. I was thinking, okay, we'll take that heat, that's okay because what the poster said is what the rest of us are thinking. It just said it, and what it really came down to was our message to those who don't understand, again, the opportunity they have to do whatever the heck they want to do even if they are jerks. Because is our vets, our active service members who are out there protecting their freedom to to be jerks. If you love freedom, you thank a vet, and I know that you guys get that and that's why I am glad to be in Iowa because I am among friends who understand that that foundational aspect of America. We appreciate our vets.
Okay and one other…this connection to Iowa before I get to the meat of the speech. Okay, someone else who hails from the Hawkeye State just, uh, you know, speaking of Bristol being here with me, part of the family….Maybe you've seen her in the news recently because photos of her were posted and they were, hm, they were candid photos. She was au naturel. Just…nothing on but leather, strip of leather. A collar, my dog, Jill Hadassah…she's from Iowa. She was trained here in Iowa, Jill was. And as Congressman King was alluding to, er ah…another scandal with the Palins. These pictures were posted of her because she has been trained as a companion for my youngest child, Trig, who has special needs, and this beautiful strapping healthy Lab of ours, Jill, she was trained by the same talent the Puppy Jake Foundation, that trains service dogs for our vets. Yes. So we've been honored to get to be a part of that, of that organization, that charity and our dog…. We're happy that Jill is from Puppy Jake Foundation, our connection to Iowa. So anyway, these pictures, well it was just scandalous that I would show are our big, strapping, as I say, healthy Lab, letting my little, tiny boy use her as a stepping stool to get to reach the kitchen sink. He kinda stood on her and looked down into the kitchen sink. I took a picture and I said, Hey this is what turning a stumbling block into a stepping stone is all about and we should all live that way. Totally innocent. Who in the world woulda thunk that it would become this huge scandal that these pictures were…. But the usual suspects, they just went loco. They just went absolutely crazy and you know, yeah, the rest of this tinderbox of a world, everything that's going on in it, right, and yet this was just the most outrageous thing that had happened. PETA, barking their tired old death threats against us and I'm thinking, oh get in line, weasels, you know. Yeah. They're howlin', howlin' through the press that, you know, "cruelty to animals, Sarah Palin," which, which surprised me considering what it does, what Joni does to those poor, defenseless, really great-tasting Iowa hogs. Yeah. And not to mention what the President admitted to doing to those innocent Indonesian puppies, huh. So Jill Hadassah, she's wonderful, she's another connection to Iowa and her motto is, better a stepping stone than a snack. Yeah. Better stepped on, than scarfed up. And yet, media crews fight us, yeah, that's right. We're getting' use to that.
Thank you so much, Citizens United. Awesome group. Thank you for the invitation. And of course Congressman Steve King. My goodness, Steve…very strong. He going rogue there in DC, putting principle over party privilege by being one of the brave, one of the few to actually pull the lever for change in congressional leadership so we can have new energy and we can have that conservative movement…the policies that will get the country back on the right track, he voted for that change.
Mostly though I thank you for being here. Thank you…today you, hearing many words from many different people but one thing is in common and that is we believe what Ronald Reagan believed. That is, we are a people who have a government. It's not a government that has a people. And it was Jefferson warning, when the people fear their government…ah, there's tyranny. But when government fears the people, there's freedom. We're here in the name of freedom.
So we are here in that name of freedom, and you, Iowa, you get to help decide who will fight for it. You'll caucus to help choose our next president. It's just about a year from now. Can't come soon enough. It's about dang time. And candidates will come here to earn your vote. The rest America, watching, and trusting Iowa to put 'em through the test to insure that they are ready for war. And it is war. It's war for the future of our country, it's war for the sovereignty and solvency of the United States of America.
Now the other side, the far left? They see it, they see a need for change. But…it's by offering real change – again? You know…coronation, rinse, repeat. Or Clinton, rinse, repeat. Clinton, rinse, repeat. That's change? These leftists, they're promoting these "Ready For" campaigns. They say, Ready for Hillary. Well, hopey-changey, astroturfy, DC-based businesses that are disguised as grassroots – they're nothing new. But – don't you wonder what the White House thinks of their peeps out there prancing around, squealing that, ohh, they're ready for someone else? They have to admit it, even, because they know that he who was The One, now with tee time on the mind, he is so over it. America, he's just not that into you.
But the $18 trillion question, though, is, do the candidates they're ready for represent any real hope, any change, or is it more of the same old failed statism that we suffered from? What can they do differently to put an economy on the side of the middle class instead of the side of their crony capitalists? Will they worry more about securing our borders and less about securing a primo tee time? How well they protect our standing across the world when they can't even protect an ambassador? When will they listen to concerns of we the people, instead of listening in on our phone calls? And how will they ax Obamacare? Remember at the start of this, HillaryCare? When will they let us control our own care? What will they do to stop causing our pain and start feeling it again?
Well, in other words, um, is Hillary a new Democrat or an old one?
Now, the press asks, the press asks, can anyone stop Hillary? Again this is to forgo a conclusion, right: It's to scare us off and convince us that a pantsuit can crush patriots? Okay, that's what this is all about.
Hey, Iowa – can anyone stop Hillary? Yeah, and let's borrow a phrase – Yes, we can! And it starts here and it starts now.
From bad, comes good. That's be one of my mantras – from very bad can come very good. So employ that as we look back on history. The last time that we suffered under such an out-of-touch presidency, well we were lifted out our malaise by a charismatic, positive, solution-oriented conservative who so loved this country and he put his faith in her people. We can't have the Gipper back. But we can offer that steady, smart, stiff-spine leadership that Reagan did, and that's our challenge.
To paraphrase the Great Communicator – to give the people real hope, well, now is the time for bold, conservative colors, not establishment pale pastels. We need to ask who carries on Reagan's legacy? Who will lead our freedom movement to victory, to begin that fundamental restoration of America? You answer that, Iowa, by making the GOP primary a competition, not a coronation.
Our party is at a crossroads, and many voters – oh shoot, some in my own family, even – they've lost faith in the GOP machine, and their registering as independents, so many voters across the country – independent. They're looking for principle and patriotism over political party. And the good news is, though, in our party, our bench is deep. And considering some in the lineup, man, it's a good thing. It is good that we have a deep bench. And it's primary competition that will surface the candidate who's up to the test and can unify. And this person has to, because knowing what the media will do all throughout 2016 to all of us, it's gonna take more than a village to beat Hillary.
Well okay and here's how we do it, okay. We go on offense. We go on offense now and we expect our GOP leaders in DC to get on offense, because we the people, we realize this is war. As I say, it is war for the solvency, the sovereignty of the United States of America. And we don't sit on our thumbs this next time when one of our own is being crucified and falsely accused of whatever the hip accusation of the day happens to be, right? Racism, sexism, whatever. Really it's kinda Orwellian, observing how that works, that rule of Saul Alinsky's no doubt, that the left employs.
Disgusting charges from the left. Reverse 'em. You know, for it is they who point a finger, not realizing they have triple that amount of fingers pointing right back 'em, revealing that they are the ones who really discriminate and divide on color and class and sex. We call them out. We don't let them get away with it then.
On gender, especially…oh man, this one…on gender – it is they who defeat women. They shackle them to the good ole boys running Washington, pimping this promise that, oh, they have to provide for the little lady's every need because, there there, a woman, she's just not capable. It's the left that does that. It isn't the right, it isn't conservatives.
So we go on offense, and we reveal the real War on Women with truth, because we can handle the truth. We give that, then we give hope. We give hope and we give a real choice. We walk it, we don't talk it by proving to voters what works. We do that by only supporting those who've actually done the job, who've gut government, incentivized the private sector and never compromised on freedom.
And proof that that works? Look at the conservative governors. They're accountable. They administer. They have these results all across the US in conservative governors offices. The results can be argued.
So we paint the contrast with bold colors and we don't underestimate the wisdom of the people when we, on offense, give them the truth and the true state of the union, especially showing young people what's actually going on and teaching young people again, there ain't no such thing as a free lunch. There is no free college. There is no free birth control. There is no free phone. Someone pays. Someone always pays.
So we undo do that leftist thinking and teaching, that enabling. We counter it with reality and we empower young kids again. We bring them on our side and we make them know – to get a buck, you get off your butt. We teach that again.
And we get honest on national security. We give hope to the people that we need not, we will not succumb to evil and we call it as it is. We address it. That must be, by the way, that 800-pound elephant in the room of the White House that the radical left won't even a name. They won't even name the threat to our way of life today. We'll hit it. We'll name it. It is any Muslim who would choose evil, whose loyalty to a dealth-cult perversion has so darkened and deceived his sole that they actually think that they're welcome here, to transform here? No! What we do, we strengthen our military, we respect our troops, and we let them – our troops, as our gatekeepers – we let them tell jihadists, uh-uh, is our house, get the hell out.
And amnesty. Man we gotta…we have to be candid and the people deserve the candidness because because that leads to solutions, they deserve solutions. Amnesty – no. The left, and the RINOs, they would reward those whose first action here is to break the law. So, no, we win with the wonderful immigrants who have built this country legally and we secure their rights and their hard-fought opportunities. Together we shore up the deserving middle class that will be decimated under this unconstitutional executive amnesty.
We also have to school our president, I guess, on the rules. An impatient president doesn't just get to trample our Constitution and ignore Congress just because he doesn't get exactly what he wants every time he wants it. It’s, umm, with all due respect to the office of the presidency, it's like, it's like an overgrown little boy whose just acting kinda spoiled and moms…we don't put up with that, do we? No. Well, dads either, but eh ah….
In fact, this reminds me of Bristol. When she was a little girl in preschool – she can testify to this – she came home from preschool one day – and her cool teacher, her awesome teacher, beautiful, sharp woman whose family had come from Mexico years ago – and Bristol said, "Mom, Mrs. Huey's mommy and daddy, they are so happy that they got to come to America and she (the daughter) she became a teacher. They're so happy and they love this country so much that they named her after our country. My teacher's first name is "Land." And I thought, Land? Oh, poor guy. I mean that's something a Palin kid would have to suffer through the rest of their life, whoa, ooh. But no, Bristol hadn't gotten it quite right. The teacher's real name was America. The parents had, the parents had named her America. And so I was explaining that to Bristol – "It's not Land or Globe – it's America." And, um, Mrs. Huey taught Bristol, all my kids, all of us a lesson that our president must have missed. When her students would whine about something, not getting their way exactly as they wanted it in that preschool class, she would sing this little mantra. America said, "Ya what ya get and you don't throw a fit." That is what our president must have missed growing up, because this insistence, this lawlessness of he trying to get his way – it tramples our Constitution.
So, from debt – and I won't even get into all the details of everything – but from debt…. You know, normal people, when they're a hole they don't wanna be in, the first thing they do is stop digging. I don't know what is wrong with the leaders in this country who understand we are in a hole we don't want to be in and they keep digging. But from debt to energy. Proving that inherent link between American-made energy and prosperity and American-made energy and security to solutions like the flat tax that we need to stop this unhealthy new obsession that we're hearing about even on our side of the aisle with this subjective income gap that we're supposed to be so obsessed with right now. When, no – we don't have to be obsessed with it. Not when everyone rises together. With conservative's proven free-market principles that incentivize pursuing capital and investment and innovation so it results in lasting prosperity for everyone.
And to finally stop this overreaching bureaucracy. We got on offense and we drive in solutions and we be bold. I remember it was, it was here in Iowa that I put forward in a speech some years ago that…I guess I can listen to me cuz they didn't do anything about it…but here, I said, why don't we decentralize the federal government? We have to be bold about this stuff. Shutter out-of-touch bureaucracy and move what's remaining across the country to the people. If there is to be a Department of Energy, put it where the energy is created. Pack up the U-Haul. What better place for the Department of Agriculture than in ag country, so they see how their policies affect the farmers and ranchers who feed our country?
Things like that – it must change. Things must change for this cover…. Our government, look at it. It, isn't too big to fail – it's too big to succeed. It's too big to succeed so we can afford no retreads or nothing will change. With the same people and same policies that got us into this status quo…. Another Latin word, status quo, and it stands for man, the middle-class, everyday Americans are really gettin' taken for a ride. That's status quo, and GOP leaders, by the way….
You know, "The Man" can only ride ya when your back is bent. So strengthen it. Then The Man can't ride you. America won't be taken for a ride because so much is at stake and we can't afford politicians playing games like nothing more is at stake than, oh, maybe just the next standing of theirs in the next election.
And we're not in the mood to give politicians a pass just because they happen to have a certain party initial, right next to their name. Evidence of this, that it's not just us thinking this but across the country. Look at the number of governors elected without a majority of the vote. That is the result of fired-up, independent and strong third party candidates nowadays. In fact it's at its highest level in the last 100 years. Alaska just elected a very strong conservative who formed an independent ticket. In order to prove this, he'd be beholden to the people – not too obsessive party politics that result in the titles, in the hierarchies and all the problems that come with that.
Being beholden to the people…. It is, it is their record, then, not their standing in the party but their record that needs to be considered, and we cut them then if we want a fired-up, unified based to get the GOP over the line to thwart the lies of the left and their politics of personal destruction. We gotta cut the candidates who don't fit that bill of being beholden to the people. You see, we'll vote for those who have a record to prove it, and voters of all stripes are desiring something to vote for this time. For their American Dream, not just against tired, failed policies. We, they will vote for American Dream for their kids and their grandkids.
So we have to be careful going through the primary process not to marginalize any independent, common-sense conservative. Hey, let's also take the sign off the door to the Oval Office, you know that one that said for a while, "No girls allowed." Take that off the wall, okay.
And, we remember, but Margaret Thatcher would always remind her constituents, anyway, that if you want something said, you ask a man. If you want something done, you ask a woman. And America is ready to get stuff done.
So we take the ball and we drive to victory, and we give real hope with real solutions, grounded in time-tested truths. These solutions that will be brought to you by a competitor with the record to prove it. And then – we're ready for Hillary.
Now, I'm ready for Hillary. Are you? Are you comin'?
It was a few summers ago…my final thought here…. A few summers ago after a great day with friends and farmers and farm animals at your Iowa State Fair, that we loaded up the motorhome and we drove some hours over the border to Illinois and we stopped along the way because my daughter Piper, she had never got to run through a maze in a corn field. So little simple things like that – that shows you how exciting my life is, eh, that was like the highlight, highlight of our trip – so Piper and her little cousin, they get to run through this maze for the very first time, and it really is like this all-Americana thrill for our family and then driving through the small towns around here that glorify our nation, again with those homes probably waving the flag from the porch, and we pulled into Dixon as we cross that state line, we pulled into Dixon, Illinois, and we turned on Hennepin Street.
We stopped at a modest, white, clapboard home, and it had a pair of rocking chairs out on the front porch and a neighbor came over and told us about the house, and he told us about the little boy who used to live in that house, and that his family couldn't afford the house, to own it, so they rented it. Well, the little boy had a little, tiny bedroom of the front of the house and that's where he would listen to the radio and he'd get his news and he'd learn from that and his entertainment, and he played football in the front yard and ride his bike up and down the sidewalks, and you know – just real life. And then as a teen, he was there working as a lifeguard there on the Rock River, where he saved 77 souls. And he grew up then, to save a world from communism and he inspired a nation to once again believe in itself. This little boy from humble beginnings that wasn't that far here was, of course, Ronald Reagan, and he never forgot where he came from, those roots in the Heartland.
And his story is our story. It embodies the American Dream. It's a dream that we all must be willing to sacrifice for and to fight for today, now more than ever, together, dreaming that, living it, working for it. We can make sure that the dream lives and that we know that our best days are still ahead. And I have every confidence that when we, when conservatives rise to that challenge and offer a real choice, we will have a rebirth of successful conservative leadership like Reagan gave us. And the American people will once again be inspired and be united as proud, secure citizens of the greatest nation in the history of the world.
And I thank you, Iowa, for being a center of that. I say, God bless you, Iowa. God bless the United States of America. Thank you.
Transcript from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYc92hi5shE.