The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

April 13, 2007

Secretary of State addresses GOP

Although 2006 was not a banner year for the Republican Party nationally, one couldn’t tell that Thursday night at the county’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Dinner.

Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita, the keynote speaker, reminded the large crowd at the Washington Conservation Club the GOP is the party that is best when it is together.

“You can do a lot of powerful things as a team and one of those things is win,” Rokita said. “And we win when we run as a team.”

Rokita, who won re-election in 2006, quoted the dinner’s namesakes of Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan to inspire county GOP members to stick together as group and as a team to win.

“We need to be absolute and proud of our history,” Rokita said. “I think we’ve forgotten how to do that. I think we’ve forgotten sometimes what we’re about and the national media doesn’t help us in that regard and the liberals certainly don’t help us in that regard.

“In a sense, that’s what they are there to do and we can’t blame them. What we have to do is remind ourselves of what we’ve done for this country and what we’re going to do for this country...that we are still the party of purpose and not the party of ‘No,’” Rokita added.

Rokita spent some time revisiting the party’s history, especially concerning the African-American vote. He said that African-Americans vote 90 percent Democrat and questioned why.

“How can that be?” Rokita said. “90 to 10. Who’s the master and who’s the slave in that relationship? How can that be healthy?”

Lincoln, Rokita mentioned, was a Republican and asked spectator Kelci Newton, 14, if she knew the abolition and reconstruction movements were created by Republicans. She said “No.” Then the Secretary of State made what he called a “strong statement.”

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