May 20, 2007 [LINK / comment]

Sixth District Republican Gala

Jacqueline joined me, as guests of Carol and Ray Ergenbright, at the Virginia Sixth District Republican Gala, which was held at the Lexington Golf and Country Club last night. It was the first time I had attended this annual event. I was especially pleased that Sixth District Chairman Fred Anderson made a point to remind the guests of the Virginia Republican Creed, which was included in the program. (I hope the "apostates" took note.)

Va 6th District GOP Gala 2007

Clockwise, from top left: Sixth District Chairman Fred Anderson, Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell, Congressman Bob Goodlatte, State Senator Emmett Hanger, Larry Roller, Scott Sayre, Vickie Parkinson, House of Delegates Majority Leader Morgan Griffith, and Delegate Ben Cline, among others.

The setting for this fund-raising event was truly spectacular, with a great view of the golf course and mountains beyond as the sun went down. The food was excellent, and the people were pleasant and friendly. Both of the candidates for the hotly contested 24th District senate seat -- incumbent Emmett Hanger and chalenger Scott Sayre -- were present, along with several of their respective supporters. (Thanks to Vickie Parkinson for giving up her seat at the table with Senator Hanger so that we late arrivals could sit together!)

In his introductory remarks, Congressman Goodlatte talked about the difficulties in working with the Democrats on Capitol Hill now that they have regained the majority once again. He sharply criticized the Democratic leaders' attempts to force a premature withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, saying he was quite certain that if only the Democrats would allow an up or down vote on the question of funding the war in Iraq, many Democrats and nearly all Republicans would vote "yes." On the subject of the proposed comprehensive immigration reform, he reiterated his firm opposition to any form of amnesty, which would only reward illegal behavior.

In his keynote address, Attorney General McDonnell focused on the theme of liberty, in the context of the global war on terror and the ongoing political battles in the United States. He noted how the founding of Jamestown by the English settlers four hundred years ago gave rise to a nation -- and a global cause -- that they never could have imagined at the time. He also reminded his guests of the perils to liberty that come with expanded government social programs, and urged everyone to work hard to elect Republicans in the upcoming elections.

At the end of the evening, several Republicans received the Eagle Award from Congressman Bob Goodlatte for their hard work on the campaign trail last year. Among those was Alex Davis from Staunton. Congratulations, Alex!