Tancredo, then Cox on stage at Straw Poll

Here are the notes from Tom Tancredo’s appearance at the Straw Poll, followed by a few notes about John Cox’s speech:

Tancredo’s supporters are crowding into Hilton.  They’re playing God Bless the USA — but not Lee Greenwood’s version.

Bill Salier is introducing Tancredo.  (Salier ran for the US Senate in 2000 and lost in the GOP primary to Greg Ganske.) The crowd’s responding to Salier, a former Marine.

Tancredo and his wife, Jackie, come on stage.  Crowd’s cheering. 

"Listen, a funny thing happened on my way here to Ames….went to Detroit, Michigan."  He’s telling the story about a Detroit cab driver from the Ivory Coast studying for his citizenship test. Quoting Yacob Smirnoff.

"Today, there are over 20 million people who are living in our country illegally….because Washington has failed to do its job and has let this problem fester for over 40 years," Tancredo says, to applause.  "We watch camapign commercials in Spanish….We are watching the balkanization of our country….They call those of us who believe in the rule of law zenophobes….immigrants refuse to assimilate and refuse to learn English….the radical multiculturalism manifests itself in disconcerting ways."

Crowd has been interrupting him with applause.

"Christmas and Easter, these are words that are banned in schools," Tancredo said.  "….We are at war for our republic and the survival of our way of life."

Now onto the war against radical Islam.  "Refusal to come to grips with this can cost us our nation," he said.  Crowd applauds.

Tells about the soldier from his hometown killed because, Tancredo says, "rules of engagement" prevented that soldier from acting.  "The only rule of engagement I’m going to have in a Tancredo Administration is we win, you lose," he said.  The ccrowd goes crazy.

"We will defend marriage as a sacred union between one man and one woman," he declares, to loud applause. 

Talks about championing the Fair Tax….segues back to immigration.  Sanctuary cities….gets loud applause for his criticism.

"We will deport people who are here illegally becaue it’s the law," he said.  Loud applause.

Talking about "Saving Private Ryan" — the movie.  "The underlying lessons of the film…were summed up by Ronald Reagan.  He said: ‘freedom is one generation away from extinction,’" Tancredo said.

Tancredo is wearing a dark jacket and a white shirt — no tie, by the way.

"Will we be so wearkened by our own cultural debasement that we will be incapable of stopping the barbarians at the gate?" Tancredo asks.  Then he closes with his campaign battle cry:  "This is our nation.  Take it back." 

Same song is being played as he exits.

John Cox, a Chicago-area businessman, is next.  He entered to the theme song from the Rocky movies.  He tells a joke about Fred Thompson.  "You haven’t seen me on Law and Order," Cox said.  "…I’m a political activist and a concerned Republican who wants principles and integrity back in our Republican Party."

The Clintons and the Bushes have dominated the White House since Reagan, and that’s bad, according to Cox.  Talks about a "horribly mismanaged war in Iraq" that is "sapping" America’s resources.  Only a handfull of people applaud. 

"Let’s send a message to Senator McCain and President Bush:  enforce the law," Cox said.

Brags that he’d be the first CPA elected president.  Ridicules Hillary Clinton, on health care reform, and the crowd applauds.

"People say I’m a long shot and maybe they’re right," Cox ends.  "…They said I was a long-shot but…I turned around a company that was losing $17 million a year….and you know, they said it was a long-shot 30 years ago when a cowboy movie actor ran for president….but you elected him."

"Career politicians have held sway in Washington for too long," Cox said, describing himself as the "ideal anti-Hillary."

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.