Concerning Rev. Creech: “When he spoke, I was blown away.”
By L.A. Williams, Correspondent
Christian Action League
SWANSBORO — Lincoln and Reagan would have been proud of how Onslow County conservatives celebrated their legacies late last month with speeches from former Attorney General Ed Meese and the Christian Action League’s own Rev. Mark Creech.
“It was a perfect combination and the best received and best attended Lincoln-Reagan Day Dinner we’ve ever had,” said Patrick Lamb, chairman of the Onslow County Republican Party and master of ceremonies for the Feb. 26 event. He said Rev. Creech’s address, titled “God’s Requirements for the State” really “revved people up and enthused them.”
The crowd of some 200 at the Swansboro Rotary Civic Center interrupted with applause at least four times and gave the CAL executive director a standing ovation at the end. His talk set the tone for Meese, who compared the leadership styles of Lincoln and Reagan and then applied his conclusions to the current political climate.
A member of Reagan’s staff beginning in the late 1960s in California and then serving as Counselor to the President and Attorney General until 1988, Meese has remained a prominent leader in the conservative movement. He holds the Ronald Reagan Chair in Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation and is chairman of Heritage’s Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.
When a snowstorm threatened to delay his flight to North Carolina, the 78-year-old and his wife hit the road from McLean, Va., to make sure they would arrive in time for the Lincoln-Reagan Day event.
“He had just had cataract surgery and couldn’t drive, so she did the driving,” said Bill Tisdale, second vice chair of the Onslow GOP. “Most people would have just canceled, but he is a strong man of his word.”
Lamb said that when news of the bad weather hit, he fielded a number of calls from folks worried that the dinner would be canceled, but knew that even if Meese was delayed, he still had Creech on tap.
“I had not heard the Rev. Creech speak before but had gotten a good report from others in the district and had spoken to Rep. George Cleveland (R-Onslow) who also recommended him,” Lamb said. “When he spoke, I was blown away. I got nothing but positive feedback from the crowd.”
He said Meese and Creech addressed similar subjects but in entirely different ways.
Opening his talk with a quote from Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, Creech told the crowd that we are engaged in a struggle “even more fundamental in its character than the Civil War” a monumental conflict of worldviews that is “ultimately a struggle over national identity.”
He then went on to describe what the Bible supports as the kind of government we need: one that ensures justice for all, has a limited and modest role, maintains the separation of powers, and encourages Judeo-Christian morality.
“We couldn’t have asked for two better speakers. One complemented the other,” Tisdale said. “The Executive Director did a great job. I couldn’t get over how he brought those people to life.”
The Onslow GOP’s largest annual fundraiser drew visitors from outside the area as well as almost every Republican elected official and candidate in Onslow, event organizers said. Lamb said he expects many of those who came to the dinner to come to the Onslow County Republican Party Convention on March 13.
Meanwhile, he’s left with one problem in the wake of the Lincoln-Reagan Day Dinner.
“We were very pleased with this year’s event,” he said. “It will be tough to top it.”