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From: da pickle <>
Subject: Re: A Hillary Staffer Goes to CPAC
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NNTP-Posting-Date: Sun, 04 Mar 2018 06:24:03 -0600
Subject: Re: A Hillary Staffer Goes to CPAC
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From: da pickle <>
Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2018 06:24:14 -0600
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On 3/3/2018 8:13 AM, da pickle wrote:
> By Annafi Wahed
> March 1, 2018 7:19 p.m. ET
> ‘Make sure to check in with us!” one friend told me. “Try not to get 
> killed,” another warned. I wasn’t off to a war zone or a spy mission in 
> Moscow. I was riding a bus from New York to Washington to attend the 
> Conservative Political Action Conference.
> To be sure, I’m a tiny, talkative South Asian woman who spent four 
> months on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign staff. I wasn’t exactly in my 
> element surrounded by people in “Make America Great Again” hats chanting 
> “Lock her up! Lock her up!“ But there was more to CPAC than that. In 
> four days, I spoke with more than 100 conservatives, most of whom 
> greeted me with open arms and thanked me for being there and having an 
> open mind. They happily engaged me in meaningful political conversation 
> and invited me for drinks and after-parties.
> Where some saw a circus, I saw a big tent. I spoke with Jennifer C. 
> Williams, chairman of the Trenton, N.J., Republican Committee and a 
> transgender activist. Twenty feet away, I spoke with a religious leader 
> who opposes same-sex marriage. While a panelist touted capital 
> punishment, several attendees crowded the Conservatives Concerned About 
> the Death Penalty booth. Hours after President Trump recast Oscar Brown 
> Jr. ’s song “The Snake” as an ugly anti-immigrant parable, several 
> influential Republicans were asking me, a naturalized citizen, how they 
> can support my startup.
> In retrospect, I’m embarrassed at how nervous I was when I arrived. I 
> found myself singing along to “God Bless the USA” with a hilariously 
> rowdy group of college Republicans, having nuanced discussions about gun 
> control and education policy with people from all walks of life, nodding 
> my head in agreement with parts of Ben Shapiro’s speech, and coming away 
> with a greater determination to burst ideological media bubbles.
> Among liberals, conservatives have a reputation for being closed-minded, 
> even deplorable. But in the Washington Republicans I encountered at 
> CPAC, I found a group of people who acknowledged their party’s 
> shortcomings, genuinely wondered why I left my corporate job to join 
> Mrs. Clinton’s campaign in 2016, and listened to my arguments before 
> defending their own positions.
> Although CPAC attendees were as passionate about policy as my liberal 
> friends, they took a more lighthearted approach. At one after-party, 
> they alternated between taking selfies with Milo Yiannopoulos and 
> engaging in a thoughtful, substantive discussion with a Democrat. One 
> notable exchange: I exclaimed, “Of course the Department of Education is 
> necessary!” which drew the rejoinder, “Great! Let’s make 50 of them!”
> As I look back on all the people who greeted me warmly, made sure I 
> didn’t get lost in the crowd, and went out of their way to introduce me 
> to their friends, I can’t help but wonder how a Trump supporter would 
> have fared at a Democratic rally. Would someone wearing a MAGA hat be 
> greeted with smiles or suspicion, be listened to or shouted down?
> At Hillary rallies, we always filled the stands with our biggest 
> supporters. At CPAC, most of the few liberals in attendance had media 
> credentials, as I did. I’m new to this, but shouldn’t we want to engage 
> with people who aren’t convinced of our viewpoints? Why aren’t there 
> more conservatives at Democratic rallies and more liberals at CPAC? What 
> are we afraid of?
> Ms. Wahed is founder of, a daily digest of liberal and 
> conservative commentary.

Apparently the CNN spin on the CPAC meeting is more to the liking of our 

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