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February 7, 2008

CPAC: Dick Cheney Speech Live-Blog

Dick Cheney is giving one of the first speeches here at CPAC. He got a very warm welcome from the crowd, which is SRO. The Cheney we're seeing now is the relaxed and funny speaker that we've known from many speeches here and other places. The intros are still going on, but I'll live-blog the substance.

11:24 - Cheney just reviewed the service record of a couple of men who will speak later today, and now he's wrapping up. A good speech, well received, and unapologetic for the war effort.

11:20 - On the war policy of the Bush administration: "Would I support those same decisions today? You're damned right I would." The war won't be on the defensive, Cheney says.

11:18 - Iraq will remain a tough job, as Petraeus has said. He is highlighting the gains from the surge, nothing terribly surprising.

11:14 - Defends the interrogation of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, which gets a rousing cheer from the audience. "They are in full compliance with the nation's laws and our treaty obligations." It has saved thousands of lives, Cheney tells the audience. "We do not torture," but do not shrink from aggressively working to protect the nation.

11:12 - Emphasizing that terrorism is not a law-enforcement issue, but a national-defense and intelligence issue. The US needs to ensure that the front line of our defenses has the tools it needs to protect us. Cheney wants to make sure that the FISA laws passed last year get extended for a lengthy period, and "those who helped secure this nation do not get harassed with lawsuits".

11:10 - "The absence of another 9/11 is not an accident -- it is an achievement." That gets by far the biggest response. Everyone is on their feet.

11:08 - A better reaction on Bush's work on pro-life and judicial nominations. Will McCain take a cue from that?

11:06 - Repeats Bush's pledge to veto budgets that don't reduce earmarks by 50%. He also talks about the EO on non-legislative earmarks. That gets a bigger cheer, but I suspect that many may wonder why the number can't be 90% or better, and why the EO couldn't have applied to this year's budget. I'm not hearing a huge reaction to this.

11:04 - Demands permanence for the Bush tax cuts and outlines the impact of them. He also calls for lower spending, and explains how that works in a $3.1 trillion budget. Well, that doesn't get much more than golf claps.

11:03 - Cheney is emphasizing economics, and the need to keep taxes low. "Put more tax money back into the hands of those who earned it." He promises no new regulations for "meddling" with the economy.

11:00 am ET - He's underscoring the support that he has for the candidates who will speak here. That may carry some weight with the conservatives, although it was somewhat subtle.


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» Roundup February 7, 2008 (UPDATE: Romney Drops Out!) from baldilocks
UPDATE: Mitt Romney just called it a day. The CPAC attentendees are PO'd, but not at Romney. The problem? It's white women. I knew it all along. :-P Lots of CPAC live-blogging: Captain’s Quarters, Hot Air, The Lovely Miss Attila. [Read More]

» Roundup February7, 2008 from baldilocks
The problem? It's White women. I knew it all along. :-P Lots of CPAC live-blogging: Captain’s Quarters, Hot Air, The Lovely Miss Attila. Both Mitt Romney and John McCain will address the conference. It’s live at C-SPAN. Mitt's on right [Read More]

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