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A Good Week November 9, 2010

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Back in the saddle again. Returned Sunday night from a 4 day trip to Philadelphia escorting 62, Florida 8th graders. It was a nice trip, not without its issues but we overcame them and never missed a beat. This was our first foray to the City of Brotherly Love.  For the most part we nailed it. A few tweaks for the next one and it will rank as being one of our best!

Chelsea Martin and Cecilia Breland with Congressman West

The week prior I was heavily involved in the democratic process here in Palm Beach County. I campaigned (along with my daughter) for our new Congressman Allen West. We volunteered at the headquarters and joined a phone bank calling to get out the vote.

LTC(R) West made an appearance; the photo is going to be pretty cool when he becomes our president!

My poll watching on election day was successful. I was stationed at a heavily Democratic skewing poll. When I inspected the printed tape of the tally at night’s end the votes ran 4 to 1 for the Dems. The turnout was extremely high too. I was in a retirement complex with about an 80% Jewish population. The average age was over 75. It was walker and wheelchair city! Needless to say the whole day was tedious for everyone.

When the electronic tapes and paper ballots were reconciled and safely sealed for shipment to the election supervisor I headed off to Allen West’s victory party at the Marriott in Boca Raton. It was in full force by the time I got there just after 9pm. The ballroom was packed with supporters, volunteers, staff and the press all watching the returns come in. Two huge video screens broadcast Fox News’ election night coverage.


West victory party

The energy was incredible. Being surrounded by like minded people all sharing the same passion and vision for our country was unreal. It was just after 11pm when Mr. West made his appearance. He gave a 10 minute stem winder of a speech, not quite accepting victory. Only 43% of the vote was in so far and he had a 10% lead. It was mathematically feasible to lose so his opponent, Ron Klein, hadn’t conceded yet. It wouldn’t be until 12:29am that it would be official. I had since left and was watching Fox News at home when they called it for West.

It sure is great to have backed a winner, but even more so because he was the right man for the job and for America. I had never involved myself to this degree before and I am sure hundreds of thousands of other Americans hadn’t either.  I’d like to think we were the reason for the conservative landslide. The next two years are no time to rest on our laurels. There is still much to do and so many liberals to oust. Thanks to all my friends who responded with financial support for Allen West and all the conservative candidates.

Poll Watching November 1, 2010

Posted by Fritz in Yachts and other things that float.
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Tomorrow, I’m doing something I’ve never done before. I’m a poll watcher for the GOP here in Palm Beach County. I went to ‘watcher school’ two Saturdays ago, got my credentials and learned what to look for and what I can and cannot do as a poll watcher. The upside is experiencing a new adventure and contributing to the process. The down side is getting my butt up at 5am to be present at the polling site I’ve been assigned to when they unload the counting machines and set up the whole sha-bang. Florida polls open at 7am and close at 7pm. They want us to stay until the last vote is cast. I’ll post about the experience Wednesday. I plan on celebrating at the Allen West victory party tomorrow night at the Boca Marriott. VOTE!

Happy Memorial Day May 31, 2010

Posted by Fritz in Yachts and other things that float.
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Three years ago a new Veterans cemetery opened west of my town. The South Florida National Cemetery held a lovely ceremony honoring all our veterans. My Dad and his wife joined me and my wife and daughter for this morning’s event. I was very pleased to see a very large turnout—at least 2000 braving the rapidly warming breeze. It reminded me of the  way we celebrated Memorial Day where I grew up in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.

The Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts marched and led us in the Pledge of Allegiance. A bag pipe and drum corp led the color guards to the forefront to open the program. A minister invoked the gathering with prayer and several local dignitaries and the incumbent Congressman in my district spoke—Ron Klein. A disgusting liberal who is being challenged by Allen West who, if you have read my blog before, is an amazing man running for Congress, District 22 from Florida. It was a shame Col. West didn’t speak.  Klein is not a veteran and West is! Thankfully Klein’s remarks were brief and the program went on with sobering words from several highly decorated veterans. I was glad my Dad was there. As the only veteran in my family, I felt he should be honored too while he is still around to enjoy it.

The cemetery has already interred over 6200 veterans. I pray those that follow are from America’s old wars and not any new ones.

Below is a screen shot from Allen West’s websight.

Allen West for Congress April 22, 2010

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I attended the April 15th Tea Party rally in West Palm last week. It was my second rally after the inaugural gathering in the rain last year. I made another sign and my lack of creativity or the need to not change the message saw me parading the same signage as last year.

Last years Tea Party protest

This year’s event was a bit smaller than last year. Probably just a hundred or so less but just as energetic and anti-incumbent as ever. The highlight for me was the keynote speech by Allen West. West is running for US Congress, district 22 here in Florida—my district.

I will admit I have never before felt such a connection to any politician (with the exception of Ronald Reagan) before. And it’s not just Lt. Col. West’s message that has me stoked. This guy has a vibe, an aura that is unmistakable.

I was standing just off the stage to the right listening to the long list of speakers that filled the two-hour rally. The event was emceed by Doug Giles, the father of ACORN exposer Hannah Giles. Hannah was the first to speak.

Hannah Giles

Her brief remarks got the crowd wound up and me wanting to get a picture with her. I had agreed to help pass out fliers promoting a no vote on a proposition up for a vote this Fall. That proposition would completely strangle development and is a blatant socialistic attempt by the Left to create more bureaucracy.  Feeling obligated to the cause I spent the time passing out the fliers rather than weaseling my way behind the stage for a photo with Hannah.

With my fliers finally distributed I wandered back to stage right and noticed Allen West had arrived and was greeting folks behind the stage. I’m normally not one to go all ga-ga over any celebrity. Twelve years in TV, I saw my share of big stars up close and worked with many in various promotions; (Tom Selleck, Kevin Costner, Bob Uecker, Lynn Austin, Joe Namath, Catfish Hunter, etc.) But I needed my picture with Col. West!

I scoped out the scene back stage and saw that I could walk practically to where he was standing. He didn’t have an entourage and was shaking hands and giving photo ops to all who asked. I decided there was no time like the present and asked a professional photographer he if would mind snapping a photo of the two of us. The guy took my camera and I then turned to Mr. West and introduced myself, asking for a picture. He couldn’t have been nicer. He lifted the ‘yellow caution tape’ that created a silly little barrier between us and stuck out his hand for a shake. My first impression was how soft his hand was. I don’t know why I was expecting something else but I was. Maybe because he served over 22 years in the Army with three tours in theater. Maybe because he jumped out of airplanes and lead men into battle. Anyway, it was one soft hand.

Allen & me

I babbled something about how excited I was to meet him and I was the first in my neighborhood to put an ‘Allen West for Congress’ bumper sticker on my car. He thanked me and I retrieved my camera from the photog who had snapped what I hope to be a very precious memento one day.

Allen West could very much be the president of the United States one day!