|Master of Ceremonies Steve King|
It is shaping into a very crowded field for 2016. The religious conservative faction of the Republican Party desperately wants one of its own representing them. Right now you would have to think Mike ❤ Huckabee is the front runner among this group, but after his sausage speech it is anyone's ball game. The two Ricks, Dr. Ben, Cruz Missile Ted, and Crazy Sarah will all be vying for their affections.
Probably the biggest surprise was John Bolton. You figure this old bull had long ago been put out to pasture, but there he was bloviating about Obama's "delusional" foreign policy. He is even being regarded as a presumptive presidential candidate. I guess because he is the only one with anything remotely close to foreign policy "experience." He served the Bush administration as US Ambassador to the United Nations, but the mercurial ambassador preferred empty bluster to diplomacy, lashing out at the UN for its soft pedal approach to reigning in terror around the globe. In Iowa, his bellicose words suited his audience perfectly.
This gathering was sponsored by Steve King, Iowa's brazen US Representative, and Citizens United, which has done its best to stack the playing field with political candidates to its liking. Citizens United is largely funded by such luminaries as the Koch Brothers, who managed to get the Supreme Court to free up campaign financing laws so that corporations could take a more active role in state and federal political campaigns. The Kochs are purportedly planning to drop $1 billion on the 2016 elections, hoping that money will buy electoral happiness.
I'm not exactly sure, whose "freedom" this summit represents, but certainly not the average Joe, or Jane as the case may be. Yet, there were all those Tea Party hopefuls who saw many of their insurgent state and Congressional campaigns undermined by the big money that has seeped into the elections.