By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Gary Palmer kicked off his campaign for Alabama’s Sixth Congressional District on Tuesday night in an overflow event at the Homewood City Hall. Over 170 people came out to hear Palmer speak to them about his plans for the nation if they elect him to the seat that is currently held by Spencer Bachus (R) from Vestavia. Congressman Bachus is not running for re-election.
Gary Palmer said, “We need to do more than just kick ant hills.” “Every candidate in this race is going to tell you they are for reducing government.” Palmer said that they will tell you that they are conservative Christians, “If you are going to run in Alabama you are going to run as a conservative Christian.” Palmer said that the question to ask is: “Whether or not they can be effective. I know that I can do that.”
The co-founder and longtime President of the Alabama Policy Institute said, “I helped set up a network of state based think tanks.” Palmer said that change is not going to change from the top down. “As Christians we have had this messiah complex,” conservatives all say that they wanted another Reagan. Palmer said that even if elected we will only have him for 8 years. Palmer said what we need is a movement that will transform this country from the bottom up.
Palmer said that there are five steps for a conservative revival in this country. First stop blaming liberals. Conservatives outnumber by liberals two to one; but they are more focused and are more committed to their ideals than we are. The average turnout for a midterm mid-term election is just 36%to 38% which means that 19% of the populace plus one decides the makeup of the Congress and most government bodies.
Second, stop saying how bad everything is and smile more. Anybody who does not understand by now how bad things are is not paying attention anyway. Conservatives should be articulating a plan to improve the country.
Third repealing Obamacare is not enough. “20 years ago we came up with a plan: Health Savings Accounts.” Hold a little bit of money for a major coverage and then the rest of the funds should go into an HAS account that the person is allowed to keep.
Palmer said that Americans ought to be able to buy coverage across state lines. Coverage ought to be portable. People with chronic conditions will need to get their insurance from high risk pools. Sen. Tom Coburn has proposed putting $7 to $10 billion in high risk pool to allow people to get insurance that could not before. Palmer said that his plan would cost less than a fourth of what we are going to spend on Obamacare.
Palmer said that we already have the money to pay down the debt. Palmer said that the Green River Formation alone has over a trillion barrels of oil and the federal government owns 70% of it. That is more oil than the world has used in the last one hundred years. We have enough coal to last four hundred years. “We are not broke we are stupid.” “We owe the Chinese $1.3 trillion and we owe the Japanese $1.2 trillion and they both need energy. We can pay down the debt with energy.” What Americans overpay for energy represents what they can’t put on their table. For some poor Americans energy represents 24% of their household income.
Palmer said that he supports the REINS act. “Every regulation with an economic impact of over $100 million must be voted on by Congress.” “Congress is violating the Constitution every day.”
Palmer said, “The Republican Party is being held captive by consultants.” In the 1960s Phyllis Schlafly, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan went out and appealed to the American people. “Ronald Reagan in that speech in 1964 set the stage for 1980. Ideas matter.”
Palmer said, “I am not an expert on world religion, but as far as I know there are only two religions that believe that man is made in the image and likeness of God.” “Only one nation in the history of the world that is built on that belief.” “Men are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights.” “You can’t have liberty without life.” “Your rights preexist government. No one has the right to take them from you.” “The purpose of government is not to tell you you have to buy a certain product or go to a certain school.”
In response to a question on the student loan crisis, Palmer said, “We gave money to people that did not qualify to get a loan.” “I spent my summers going to the woods logging with my dad.” While in college Palmer said that he worked 53 hours a week. “I don’t think that is a bad thing today. It is not a bad idea to get a job,” to pay for college costs.
Palmer said, “Right now I think that the courts have exceeded their scope of authority, just like Congress has, just like the White House has.” “We have the right to self-government and that is being denied to us every day.”
Palmer said that, “A Constitutional Convention is a little excessive but I support that,” to rein in federal government. “We are a representative Republic and not a democracy.”
On protecting the rights of the unborn Palmer said, “If we can’t get the right life we are not going to get anything else right. Life is absolutely fundamental to everything that I believe.”
Palmer said that he thinks that George Washington is the greatest American. Crossing the Delaware under those dire circumstances was a bold and difficult decision, but Washington could not have done it alone. All those men who were with him had to make the decision on whether or not to get in the boat and follow him across that frozen river to attack the Hessians. Palmer said, “There is no leader that is better than the people that follow him. I am asking you to get in the boat with me. We will save the Republic if enough of us will get in the boat and do your part.”
Rick Burgess endorsed Palmer at the event.
Burgess said we have to return to the original intent of the founding fathers. The founding fathers had a vision for this country that led to our success and to ignore them and their principles is to risk our demise.
Burges said, “I get so sick and tired of always having to compromise something in a candidate.” Burgess said that he is tired of selecting the lesser of two evils. “I am tired of holding my nose in voting and I am tired of explaining things to God.” “I know Gary Palmer and he will not compromise the original intent.” He knows why America is here.” Burgess said that he wants the country to turn back to God. We are on the wrong road. That is not even up for debate. I am at the point where I am going to be very strong on how I filter candidates from now on. I am here to represent Gary Palmer unapologetically.”
David Barton also endorsed Palmer. He said, “I have Known Gary for 20 years. Most of the people in this room like the Constitution, love this Constitution. We have got a great Constitution but if you don’t combine it with leaders who will uphold and support the Constitution it is worthless that is why I support Gary Palmer.”
Barton said that there are basic principles that are behind American exceptionalism and they are: 1) We believe there is a divine creator, 2) Inalienable Rights come from God, and 3) Government exists to protect inalienable rights.
Barton said, “If they won’t protect your life they won’t protect your money.”
Barton said that he has known Palmer for over 20 years and he is well informed on every one of those issues from top to bottom. “Elect leaders that you don’t have to lobby.” There are 10,000 to 13,000 bills introduced into Congress every year. “Gary is not going to be a vote in D.C, he is going to be a warrior.” “This is an opportunity to get a good guy in Congress.”
In Alabama’s Sixth Congressional District Republican Primary Gary Palmer joins state Senator Scott Beason from Gardendale, longtime Harbert executive Will Brooke, mattress manufacturer Tom Vigneulle, State Representative Paul DeMarco from Homewood, Indian Springs orthopedist Chad Mathis and Robert Shattuck.
The winner of the June 3rd Republican Primary will face Democrat Avery Vise in the November general election.