D’Souza: All bets are off with Trump; full house for Lincoln Day Dinner

ST. GEORGE — Hundreds of people gathered at the Dixie Center St. George Saturday evening for a celebration of conservatism in Southern Utah and to hear keynote speaker, noted author and filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza.

A large audience attends Washington County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner, St. George, Utah, Feb. 18, 2017 | Photo by Austin Peck, St. George News

The Washington County Republican Party’s annual Lincoln Day Dinner sold over 800 tickets to the public and featured several high-profile guests as well as D’Souza, including Gov. Gary Herbert and Sen. Orrin Hatch.

The mood was celebratory and energetic for both the presenters and audience whose political party now holds the White House and the majority in Congress.

See video in the media player top of this report.

“It was a great year for the Republican Party, so I think there was a lot of enthusiasm, they were happy to be here,” Washington County Republican Party chair Robert Jensen said.

Despite its victorious tone, the evening’s discussion focused on what a few of the speakers termed as the “battles” ahead with topics of discussion ranging from public lands to so-called “fake news.”

“It seems to me that we, as Republicans, we have a big fight on our hands,” D’Souza said.

Public lands

A major point of discussion included the ongoing public lands debate.

“We’ve been personally hurt by the Obama administration, by Obama’s tenure, by his lame duck last minute executive action,” Hatch said in reference to President Barack Obama’s establishment of the Bears Ears National Monument.

U.S. Sen. Orrin Hatch speaks at Washington County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner, St. George, Utah, Feb. 18, 2017 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

Hatch said he recently met with President Donald Trump and spent more than an hour discussing issues affecting Utah voters, particularly public lands.

“I was encouraged that unlike his predecessor, President Trump actually took the time to listen and understand the heavy toll of this overreaching action.”

He said Trump was willing to stand with him on the issue and would continue to listen to his concerns.

“Over the next four years, I expect the debate over public lands will be dramatically different from what we have because of who we have in the white house,” Hatch said. “And we have him on our side in the fight for local control.”

State Sen. Don Ipson said he and fellow state legislators had already prepared a resolution to draw back the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante monuments for Hatch to present to Trump.

“We need to get this public property back to the public that it belongs to,” Ipson said.

Cultural fight

In his keynote, D’Souza claimed three institutions are currently under the control of the Democratic Party: academia, Hollywood and the media.

“This isn’t just a political fight; it’s a broader cultural fight,” D’Souza said.

The press and so-called “fake news” was mentioned several times by different speakers.

“We live in a time of fake news,” Rep. Chris Stewart said in a prepared videocast.

Stewart argued the press has acted irresponsibly in its coverage of the Trump administration.

Author and filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza’s latest book on display at Washington County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner, St. George, Utah, Feb. 18, 2017 | Photo by Austin Peck, St. George News

“I think honestly the responsible media – the mainstream media – they just absolutely lost their minds in some cases in their opposition to this new administration,” Stewart said.

D’Souza made a similar argument, recollecting when news media focused on polls in the U.S. 2016 general election that more or less guaranteed a win for candidate Hillary Clinton.

“I’m still haunted by these images of reporters and press, you know, huffing and puffing to drag that crooked hag across the finish line,” D’Souza said in reference to election night coverage.

He went on to argue that the so-called “liberal media” are campaigning against the Trump administration with misinformation.

“This is perhaps the most distinguishing feature of the Trump presidency – is that all bets are off,” D’Souza said, noting that the president would not back down from a fight.

D’Souza has influenced public policy through his many writings and has authored several New York Times bestsellers and his most recent film, “Hillary’s America: The Secret History of the Democrat Party,” presenting audiences with well-documented and troubling facts about the Democratic Party and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the county Republican Party’s news release stated. The film was released in the thick of the 2016 presidential campaign season.

Read more about D’Souza: ‘Hillary’s America’ filmmaker to speak at ‘Lincoln Day Dinner’

D’Souza’s latest book, “Hillary’s America,” was on offer at the end of the event. He stayed to offer signatures and meet the public.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

 

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6 Comments

  • comments February 19, 2017 at 2:14 pm

    I really hope the president doesn’t cow to the corrupt, fully greed-driven clown show that is Utah republicans.

    “In his keynote, D’Souza claimed three institutions are currently under the control of the Democratic Party: academia, Hollywood and the media.”

    he can call it the Democratic Party, but that’s only a partial truth. They are globalist elitists and also zionist elite. And to be fair they have huge amounts of power within the R party as well. The R party, before Trump was elected, had 0 intention of addressing most of the issues Trump has on his agenda. They are every bit as corrupt and sold-out as the D-party. The game changer is Trump, that’s it.

    “I’m still haunted by these images of reporters and press, you know, huffing and puffing to drag that crooked hag across the finish line,”

    Too funny

    • mesaman February 19, 2017 at 9:13 pm

      Entrance of the socialists!

    • .... February 20, 2017 at 12:22 am

      Well heck Bob write a letter to your reelected Republican Governor I’m sure he cares what you think

      • Real Life February 20, 2017 at 10:11 am

        12:22? Who woke you up?

  • Thecadean February 19, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    Be afraid. Be very afraid. Even as a registered Republican and 33 year veteran of World Trade and the worlds largest financial institutions I find this all very disturbing. I’m very appreciative of the underprivileged and minimum wage earners voting to cut my taxes. But this is helping those who you don’t need assistance. The proposed border tax and cut in affordable health Act will only widen the wealth divide between the wealthy and the so-called middle-class.
    Utah thrives on visitors to see its monuments and parked. And Though its educational system ranks among and lowest in the US it has some very fine institutions. With all of the sunshine and wind Utah could lead the nation in alternative energies. But Despite this we continue to elect leaders that undermine every Advantage this Great state of Utah has to offer.
    It’s time to wake up before it’s too late. To read things like fake media and the big three :Academia the media and Hollywood are the enemy? Do we not remember when Germany was burning books before it burn people? Sad, very sad.

  • ScanMeister February 20, 2017 at 6:32 am

    This quote from Dinesh nails it “I’m still haunted by these images of reporters and press, you know, huffing and puffing to drag that crooked hag across the finish line,” D’Souza said in reference to election night coverage. Shame on the liberal press……like spoiled brats striking out any way they can to further their agenda…..and woe to anyone that apposes them.

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