Last night, our local Salem affiliate AM 1280 The Patriot hosted a free rally for its listeners that featured its powerful talk line-up as its headliners: Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved, and Dennis Prager. The intention was to get the listeners fired up and to keep that energy in motion for the next seven days. And if anyone doubted the energy of Minnesota Republicans, last night would have dispelled the question. They ran out of tickets for the 3,000-seat Orchestra Hall almost a week earlier just by promoting it on The Patriot — and they also sold out the $100-per-plate VIP dinner as well.
Hugh Hewitt spoke first, introduced by the inimitable James Lileks, and he reminded people about the pre-election polling in 1976, 1980, and 2004. He remains optimistic that John McCain is within striking distance, and that pollsters have underestimated him yet again:
Michael Medved spoke next, and he just could not understand how Al Franken won a major-party nomination. He repeatedly praised Norm Coleman as one of the finest Senators on Capitol Hill, and drew contrasts as stark as night and day between the two.
Dennis Prager spoke the longest, and he had the audience riveted. He defended Michele Bachmann in the beginning of the speech and castigated Chris Matthews for playing games, but also noted that Bachmann didn’t challenge Matthews’ assumptions about values. As anyone who listens to Dennis knows, he focuses on values more than issues in his program, and spoke at length about American values and their antitheses. The most compelling part of his remarks come near the end, when he talks about the danger of “change” as compared to “improvement”, and why “change” should be feared — especially by those who use it as a political theme:
These are lengthy speeches, but well worth viewing — and viewing repeatedly for the next seven days. The Three Tenors of Talk remind us why we need to remain vigilant, and why we should remain optimistic until the last ballots are counted. We can still win this election, and we simply must do it.
Update: Sean from Everything I Know Is Wrong has pictures, including a couple of me.