The barbecue at the Westside Republican Club Reagan Day BBQ was legit, if the reactions of those eating it were any indication.
Serving it up: politicians, including a number of candidates in Florida’s 4th Congressional District.
Red meat was on the menu, and in the speeches as well.
State Sen. Aaron Bean was predictably florid and emphatic, making the case of the urgency of the election to the grassroots.
“Let me ask you, Nassau,” Bean thundered. “How’s Obamacare working for you?
After contending Hillary Clinton would be a continuation of the last eight years, Bean got off the line of the day: “What is our federal government concerned with? Housing for illegal transgender aliens.”
The big draws, in terms of speeches: Senate candidates Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and Rep. Ron DeSantis, who delivered different messages in different styles.
Lopez-Cantera mentioned the political risk he took running with Rick Scott. “I didn’t run from Charlie Crist,” before launching into his familiar explanation of being a “Florida Republican,” where “we say we’re going to do something and we do it.”
“The Democratic Party is loaded for bear,” he said, declaring he’s “the only one who can beat them.”
DeSantis, for his part, has refined his primary stump speech.
The Ponte Vedra Republican, who spoke 45 minutes after he was scheduled, sat somewhat patiently with his wife at a table at the front.
The room was half-empty by the time DeSantis spoke, but it didn’t faze him: he hit all of his marks.
There were jokes, such as the one he told of pulling out his House of Representatives voting card at dinner … but it was rejected because it was $19 trillion over the limit.
And a Whitman’s Sampler of familiar memes, from riffs about the email scandals of Clinton and Lois Lerner to dire warnings about Islamic Jihad and “Iran running roughshod over the Middle East.”
As well, his message about the importance of veterans was well-honed.
“The best monuments the country has to offer,” said DeSantis, are in the Arlington Cemetery, “a lot of small, white headstones.”
DeSantis and Lopez-Cantera were the only two senate candidates on hand.