Paul Ryan – AEI Annual Dinner 2013 | ARCHIVES
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Paul Ryan – AEI Annual Dinner 2013 | ARCHIVES


ALEX J. POLLOCK: Good evening, ladies and
gentlemen. We’re going to start by singing “America
the Beautiful,” two verses. You will see the words up on these big screens. So if we could all stand and join in singing
together. O beautiful for spacious skies
For amber waves of grain For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain America, America
God shed his grace on thee And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress A thoroughfare of freedom beat
Across the wilderness America, America
God mend thine every flaw Confirm thy soul in self-control
Thy liberty in law. ARTHUR BROOKS: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. It’s my pleasure to welcome all of you to
the American Enterprise Institute’s annual gala. I’m Arthur Brooks, president of AEI. On behalf of our trustees, our board of academic
advisers, our 200 scholars and staff, we’re honored to share this evening with you tonight. Our annual gala is always a special evening. It’s time to honor the great work that our
scholars and fellows have done over the past year. It’s a time to enjoy the company of friends
and colleagues in this incredibly beautiful setting, and, most importantly, it’s the
occasion on which we present the Irving Kristol Award, AEI’s highest honor. But tonight is a particularly special one
for us at AEI because tonight we celebrate AEI’s 75th anniversary. This is a signal milestone for AEI. It means we fought for free enterprise and
American greatness for almost a third of the republic’s history. As we pause to reflect on the first 75 years,
we also rededicate ourselves to the timeless principles and our enduring cause. Maximizing liberty, increasing individual
opportunity, strengthening free enterprise, and American leadership. These aren’t just our values as an Institute. They’re the bedrock of the American project. They’re why America remains a beacon to
the world. We believe in these principles because we
believe in the idea and the ideal of America and because we know that free enterprise creates
unmatched opportunities for human flourishing and that American leadership is an act of
global brotherhood. We also know that these principles urgently
need defenders, defenders who can explain why freedom, opportunity, and enterprise not
only make us better off, but they make us better people — people willing and able
to share the prosperity and opportunity with those who need it most here and around the
world. There are many in our country today who fear
that America’s best days are behind us, that we’re fading into just another giant
social democracy. But I look out over the faces in this room,
at men and women utterly committed to limited government, but an unlimited America, and
I feel confident about our nation’s future. At the American Enterprise Institute, we see
ourselves as conservators of a tradition, building on the wisdom of our intellectual
forefathers and strengthening that which is best in our country. With every generation, AEI cultivates and
develops what has come before seeking to improve our great American institutions. Now we realize that even the greatest intellectual
insights are of scant use without policy entrepreneurs to engage them and bring them alive to the
public discourse. And we at AEI are deeply grateful, not just
to tonight’s Irving Kristol Award winner and his colleagues in elective public service,
but to so many of you here tonight who will put the fight for freedom, individual opportunity,
and free enterprise at the center of your lives and at the center of your careers. At this time, it’s my honor, on behalf of
AEI’s Council of Economic Advisers and the Kristol family, to introduce the winner of
this years’ Irving Kristol Award. One time, not that long ago, a journalist
asked me this question, “As president of AEI, you deal with a lot of politicians. Who is the think tankiest of them all?” Now, by this, I think he meant the ability
to dive deeply into policy and not the tendency to have soup on his tie. My reaction was immediate. Congressman Paul Ryan from Wisconsin. Few politicians can master the details of
policy like Paul. Furthermore, few can fit the details into
a policy message that dignifies the values of America’s founders, and it’s just extraordinary. That conversation with a journalist got me
thinking about the Irving Kristol Award that we present each year, and I nominated Paul
to AEI’s Council of Economic Advisers. They enthusiastically agreed to give him this
award. That was last summer. When I called Paul to tell him, he gladly
accepted, but he offhandedly said that it might be a bit complicated by a new turn of
events in his life. A week later, Mitt Romney announced that Paul
was to be his running mate for vice president. What a year it’s been for Paul. I’m really delighted tonight to dedicate
an evening and AEI’s highest honor to Paul Ryan’s service, his ideas, and his future. I can’t wait to hear his thoughts. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the winner
of the 2013 Irving Kristol Award, Congressman Paul Ryan. PAUL RYAN: Thank you. Wow. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Really an undue honor. Thank you. You know, what do I say? I wanna thank Arthur for this, for his remarks. When he did call me that one day, that’s
not exactly what I said. I said, “I thought you didn’t give this
thing to politicians.” I wanna thank you all for this award. You know, as I look around this room, one
phrase just keeps coming to my mind: think tank prom. You all look so lovely. What a wonderful evening. And it’s an honor to be recognized by your
peers. It’s also a special honor to be recognized
for your work. So, I hope that this evening I can give you
some sustenance and I can do it in as brief a period of time as possible so you can get
on with your meal. I wanna say that I’m especially grateful
because in this particular case, it’s an award to be recognized by your peers for your
contribution to a cause. It’s our common cause, and the cause that
we’ve labored with. The cause of AEI is the American idea. What is this idea? Well, it’s pretty simple. It’s the belief that the circumstance of
your birth should not determine the outcome of your life. That if you work hard, you play by the rules,
you get ahead, you can get ahead and make a difference. As I will explain, this belief is at risk. It’s in need of support. And AEI, AEI has given it support. For years, you’ve taught the country about
the American idea — what it means, where it came from, who first spoke of it, and why. And one man who gave his all to this effort
was the man who we’re really honoring tonight, Irving Kristol. Irving Kristol was a renaissance man. He could discuss Russo and size up Reagan
all while the rest of us try to catch up with him. He was a perfect blend of book smarts, know-how;
in short, he was one of a kind. But you’ve carried on his work quite well
here at AEI. You’ve continued to defend the American
idea. I, too, have come to a number of these dinners. Four years ago, Charles Murray stood here
and argued that we should keep our way of life because it’s the best way of life. It’s the most challenging and the most fulfilling. I was so moved by that lecture that I printed
off hard copies and sent it to every one of my staffs. Sent to anybody I could find. Last year, Leon Kass took out the baton. He argued that we should love our country,
not just because it’s our own, but because it’s good. It respects every person’s dignity. Both men reminded us why we should defend
the American idea. But we might lose it. Today, the left runs Washington. They seek to replace the American idea with
the progressive state. They wanna replace equal opportunity with
equal outcomes. First, let me say they’re well-intentioned. They’re trying to do good as they see it. Hard as it might be to admit, they’re speaking
to a need, a need for security in a world of growing complexity. So before conservatives can win, we have to
understand what it is we’re doing wrong. The fact is, we also have to speak to this
need. We have to explain how too much government
will weaken security and how our agenda will increase security. We have to reclaim the center of our politics. And we can do this; it is not too late. My predecessors on this stage discussed why
we should save the American idea. Tonight, I want to discuss how we can save
the American idea. It’s a big project. It goes way beyond politics. But I will stick to the political side with
a due sense of humility in a crowd like this. Here’s the “CliffsNotes” version. Both the left and the right too often split
the world into halves — the individual and the government. They forget the key part of life, that part
that gives real security. They forget society, that space in-between. We can save the American idea by saving that
space for society. All in all, I hope that I show you the value
of a politician’s perspective and that after I’m done, you don’t take the award back. First, let’s review where things stand. The left thinks we’re in a new era, and
for good reason. The health care law is not just another entitlement. It puts one-sixth of our economy in the hands
of federal bureaucrats. It allows government to stage-manage our lives
in the most personal of domains, our health. And now that the Supreme Court has uphold
the law, we cannot be sure that it will enforce the Constitution’s limits. We can’t be sure that government will stay
within its boundaries. So, how do we get here? The health care law is part of a larger movement
called progressivism. It began in the late 19th century. At first, it was a bipartisan affair. The progressives included Republicans like
Teddy Roosevelt and Democrats like Woodrow Wilson. These leaders were skeptical of the Constitution. They disliked the idea of limited government,
and you can understand why. At the turn of the 20th century, change was
everywhere from the crowded streets in New York to the plains of Texas. America was becoming more urban, more industrial. Families were leaving the farm for the city
where their lives fell into turmoil, and life became much more complex. No longer did most lives follow the changing
of the seasons. They now followed the twists and the turns
of the business cycle. We were growing fast, which meant serious
growing pains. Immigrants slept in tiny apartments, 10 to
a room. Families lived with a threat of disease and
often death. Banks went bust. Our economy was growing mightily, but there
was great pain along the way. And that pain seemed to cry out for somebody
to do something. And that somebody, the progressives thought,
was the federal government. The progressives thought they were improving
on the founders’ work. They thought that the Constitution was old
and inadequate. People needed more than just natural rights. People needed government-granted rights. Only government could navigate the turns of
history. Only government could remove the uncertainty
from life. In the progressive state, government would
build up the most wealth for our country and divvy it up in the fairest way. The progressives saw our federal system as
an obstacle. They thought our local communities were parochial
and inefficient. Why should people have to rely on their family? Why should they have to work with their neighbors? They believed the attachments of family and
neighborhood, like the Constitution, were old and inadequate. Their policies weakened those attachments. In fact, they shrinked into one attachment,
attachment to the government. Now, the progressives wanted a national community
where governments stood supreme tending to the needs of its subjects. Progressivism is well-intentioned, but it
is also, in my opinion, in my humble opinion, arrogant and condescending. Instead of helping people make their own decisions,
it makes those decisions for them. It makes Washington the center of power and
politicians the center of attention. Here’s one reason Teddy Roosevelt was a
progressive. His daughter once said that he wanted to be
the bride at every wedding and the corpse at every funeral. But this vision proved compelling. It drew thousands of people into government
— the new dealers, the whiz kids, the poverty warriors. Confident in their cause, they seized the
moral high ground. They said they were the heirs of the founders
when, in reality, they were the replacements. They said they were for the people. And their opponents, well, they were for the
rich. They were selfish. When we were debating the health care bill
in the House, one Democrat described the Republican position this way. He said, “Don’t get sick. And if you do, die quickly.” Funny, I don’t seem to remember that part
in our substitute bill. The progressives hijacked our rhetoric as
well. They knew the appeal of our founding principles. They masked their novel ideas in the founders’
language and still do. As President Woodrow Wilson started new federal
agencies and created a new income tax, what did he call his agenda? The New Freedom. Behind all of this talk is the same idea,
the same idea behind the health care law. The left thinks they can make health care
more rational. And they don’t mind stepping on a few toes
to do it. The law puts new burdens on doctors. It adds new coverage mandates, including those
that violate some people’s religious beliefs. So, doctors talk of closing their offices,
and Catholic bishops are thinking of closing their hospitals. Government is pushing out all those providers
who don’t agree with it. It’s clearing out that space between itself
and each person. It’s invading deeply personal relationships,
and in some cases, ending them. Yet they keep winning elections. Why? Well, you can see the appeal. In uncertain times, people look for security. Progressives seem to have an answer. We may not live in the farms anymore, but
we are moving into an information-driven economy where change is so rapid. Creative destruction sounds a lot better than
it feels. Change dislocates and disrupts. The hardships are real. In the progressive state, it offers a sense
of security. But it’s a false sense of security, because
government cannot keep all of these promises. We’re learning this the hard way. For years, we’ve talked about big government
in theory. Now, we’re seeing it in practice. Again, look at the health care law. We were told, “If you like your insurance
plan, you can keep it.” But insurance companies are dropping coverage. Companies are dropping their coverage. We were told that if you liked your doctor
you could keep her, but your doctor may not keep you. We were told that premiums will fall, but
they’re going up dramatically. I believe this health care law will collapse
under its own weight, but we have to offer something better in its place. This is our opportunity to take back the initiative. And our goal, let me be really clear about
this, our goal is not simply to win an election, it’s to improve people’s lives. Politics is a means to an end. It’s not an end in and of itself. And the end is for all people to be able to
pursue happiness. So, our job is not to make even more empty
promises; it’s to revive the American idea. We have to show that the American idea is
superior to the progressive state, both in our time and for all time. We have to show that the American idea offers
true security because unlike the progressive state, it offers true community. Its promise is real. Here’s what the left got right. The American idea needs a strong government
to secure it, but a government is effective only when it is limited. And a massive government can stifle the American
idea. Government can’t replace our local communities,
and it shouldn’t even try. Instead, it should reinforce our communities. Government should expand the space where a
free society can thrive. We should expand that space because it’s
part of the American idea. We want everyone to have a chance in life,
a chance to be happy. And you know what? We’re happiest when we’re together. We want to be together. It’s in our nature. We feel it in our bones. Now, Barney Frank once said, “Government
is the name for the things we do together.” That’s just one name. There are lots of them: the church meeting,
the neighborhood watch, the food bank, the small business, the health care clinic, the
homeless shelter. We call these things mediating institutions,
but, in the end, they’re just people, people working together. And the more we work together, out of our
own free will, the stronger we become. The strongest glue isn’t fear or force,
it’s friendship and love. We stick together. We stick together because we share the same
beliefs. That’s the source of our strength. And when government tries to do too much,
when it replaces cooperation with coercion, it weakens our country. It pulls us apart. It deprives people of their purpose. So, conservatives, most of all, believe in
cooperation because, most of all, we believe in freedom. That’s something I learned from AEI, from
people like Peter Berger, Richard Newhouse, Michael Novak, Bill Schambra. You’ve preserved and expanded on Robert
Nesbitt’s central insight. People hunger for freedom, for self-fulfillment,
and they hunger for a community where they can realize their potential. That’s the key to the American idea, and
I learned it from you. You know, I also learned it from my mom, Betty. Thanks for the shout-out for Betty. My dad died when I was 16. It was tough on our family, but my mom went
out, and she got involved. She took flight, she got ready, she pulled
herself up. She got involved in everything: the school
board, the local parish, the garden club, the bridge club. Heck, she didn’t even know how to play bridge. She still doesn’t. And she made lifelong friends. In a group of widows, actually. When a friend in Janesville would lose a husband,
Betty would be the first there to comfort. And over time, they formed a group, and it
began to grow. Out of their losses, they created something
new. They formed a community of support. She’s just one of many people like her. My hometown, Janesville, Wisconsin, is full
of people like this. Like a guy named Burdette Erickson. Several years ago, the fourth ward of Janesville
was overrun with drug dealers, and they were brazen. They did their deals in the light of day,
even on one elderly woman’s front porch. She had to close her front drapes for fear
of seeing what was happening, and she was worried she would get shot. This is in Janesville, Wisconsin. So Burdette gathered his neighbors in his
basement one night, and he and his neighbors, they made a pact with one another. Either the drug dealers go, or we go. They formed a neighborhood watch. Their families told the police about the gangs’
deals and their hideouts. And soon, they took their neighborhood back. Now the inmates in our local prison in Janesville,
they tell the people coming through, “Don’t do drugs here, don’t deal, you’ll get
busted.” And so young families are moving in, and the
drug dealers are moving out. Our country is full of stories like these,
of people banding together to meet a common need. And the most obvious example of this is our
system of free enterprise. You know, as Arthur likes to say, “We have
to remember free enterprise isn’t only the efficient thing to do, it’s also the right
thing to do because it’s a school of character. The voluntary exchange of goods and services
brings out the best in us. It builds trust. It teaches discipline. And it rewards hard work. We have to make the moral case for free enterprise.” In short, we have to show the full scope of
our vision. We have to explain that conservatism is about
more than the economy; it’s also about our culture. It’s about the kind of country we wanna
be. It’s about the kind of life we wanna share. We want people to enjoy the journey of living
a full life, a life full of trials and tribulations, of loss and gain, and, ultimately, of the
betterment of ourselves, our children, and our communities. Here’s our problem. We have failed to communicate this vision
to those who have never heard of it. We have retreated to our cultural cul-de-sacs
in order to protect our immediate surroundings. Meanwhile, our inner cities, our barrios,
our poor rural communities are languishing. This is where our opportunity lies. This is where we must go. This is where we must demonstrate our full
vision of freedom and community. This vision is our response to progressivism. It’s not as easy to sell, but it’s more
complete, and it’s much more real. We have to show how it works and how, in so
many cases, today’s version of the American idea is right under our noses. You know what? We can start just six miles down the road
from here. A few weeks ago, I took a trip to Anacostia
with my good friend, Bob Woodson. I’m a really big fan of Bob Woodson’s
and a big believer in his Center for Neighborhood Enterprises. You see, Bob just doesn’t talk about these
communities; he talks with these communities. In fact, it is in these very neighborhoods
that we see our vision in action. Tonight, I wanna share a story that I heard
just six miles from here. It’s about a man named James Woods. James grew up around here. His family wasn’t well-off. They struggled, but they loved each other. He served 10 years in the military, and after
he got out, he met up with some friends from his past. Those friends got him in trouble. They started selling drugs. He became addicted. He was homeless. He slept in the streets. Pretty soon, the law caught up with him. James was charged with selling drugs. The law said 20 years in prison, but the judge
gave him a break. He got only three. After James got out of prison, he made a decision. He wanted to be the man that his parents raised
him to be. He would change. So he joined an all men’s ministry, but
he was still struggling. He was still searching. And every night, through that bedroom window,
he would hear this singing. It was in the ministry of Pastor Shirley Holloway
right next door. He didn’t know Pastor Holloway, but he heard
her members praying. He was intrigued. So, one day, he went across the street, and
he joined the House of Help, the City of Hope. It was a life-changing moment. James became good friends with Pastor Holloway,
and she did him a big favor. She paid his legal fees to keep him out of
jail. James got a job. He offered to pay her back, but instead of
cashing his checks, Pastor Holloway was saving them so that he would ultimately have a nest
egg. He was stunned. It wasn’t that she saved his money without
his knowing. It wasn’t that she gave him a job. It was that she showed him love. James would say that he didn’t expect Pastor
Holloway’s love because she didn’t know him, but in a way, she did know James. She knew who he could be. Soon, he turned his life around. At the ministry, he met his future wife, Angela. She followed a path similar to James. And today, they’ve been married for 13 years. As James would say, “Angela loves God now,”
and because she’s his wife, “She’s always praying.” He’s been clean for 13 years. He now counsels about 60 men at the ministry. He helps the unemployed. He helps the homeless. He helps the addicted. Angela, meanwhile, has a steady job as a security
guard. If you asked Pastor Holloway for her secret,
she would say her ministry uses two ingredients: faith and love. Her motto is, “We don’t see the problem,
we see the person.” Since the ministry started in 1995, they’ve
served over 40,000 people, six miles from here, struggling with drug abuse. Eighty-five percent of their members have
stayed clean. Eighty-five percent. The secret, of course, it’s the people. In people, we find real security and real
love. A welfare check would not have helped James. It might’ve met his material needs, but
only for a time. He had spiritual needs too. Only people and God can address those needs. James, Angela, and Pastor Holloway, they’re
three great examples. And I’m honored to have him here as my guests
tonight. Please join me in recognizing them and thanking
them for their inspiration and their witness. When we make policy, we should keep people
like James in mind. Our job is not to replace the Pastor Holloways;
it’s to support them. Yes, the federal government has a role to
play, but it’s a supporting role, not a leading one. Its job is to give people the resources and
the space to thrive. And in this role, we should follow two principles:
solidarity and subsidiarity. Solidarity is the belief that we’re all
in this together, that we share a common purpose, the pursuit of happiness. And public servants should share one goal,
the common good. Subsidiarity, it’s like federalism. It’s the belief that each part of society
adds to the whole and that each part must be free to do its work on its own terms, so
government shouldn’t assume other people’s tasks. It shouldn’t make decisions better left
with the family or the neighborhood. The people closest to the problem, they’re
more likely to solve it because they know the community best. And this is the opposite of progressivism,
which believes that Washington knows best. We need to apply these timeless principles
to the challenges of the day. You know, that’s what we do in the House
budget. What’s the link here? Our budget is known for one part of our vision,
that government can’t spend beyond its means. And it’s true, the national debt, it hurts
our economy. It restricts opportunity. It weighs down our communities. We have to stop spending money we don’t
have. But that’s our policy; it’s not our purpose. Our purpose is to reclaim the American idea. And our policies reflect that purpose. We’re not just trying to balance the books;
we’re trying to grow the economy. We’re trying to expand that space for society. The welfare state, well, it threatens to close
that space. That’s why we need to change course. We need to strike a balance between society
and governments. We need to let each part play its role. We need government to meet its obligations
without crowding out the American idea. In short, our purpose is to ensure that if
you work hard and play by the rules, you can get ahead. It’s to leave our children a country as
strong as the one we inherited. And to do that, government must reinforce
the space for society. It must apply the principles of solidarity
and subsidiarity. Take Medicare. We need to protect this critical program. We need to maintain solidarity with our seniors,
but we also need to strengthen it by harnessing the knowledge of our local communities. We need to harness the power of subsidiarity. Instead of imposing one plan on everyone,
we give seniors a choice so they can pick the insurance plan that works best for them. Progressives think people aren’t smart enough
to make these decisions on their own, they shouldn’t be given these options. But look at Medicare’s prescription drug
benefit. It works like the reform we’d apply to all
of Medicare. It comes in consistently under budget, and
satisfaction with that program is sky high. We apply the same principles to Medicaid. We maintain funding to show solidarity with
the poor, and we harness the power of subsidiarity by enlisting the aid of the states. We give state governments more flexibility. We let them tailor their programs to meet
their people’s needs. And by doing so, we hope to make Medicaid
a better program for those who rely on it, but our replacement needs to go further than
that. We have to help people who aren’t on either
program, and that’s the majority of the country. The health care law will make things much
worse, but even the current health care system needs to be fixed. That is something we all must acknowledge. Today, our tax code provides an open-ended
subsidy for an employer’s health insurance. It does nothing for people who buy health
insurance on their own. The code locks workers to their jobs, it favors
the wealthy, and it pushes up costs. Well, we need to help families get and keep
their health insurance. We can do that by attaching the tax benefit
to the individual. And if they choose a plan that’s less expensive
than the benefit, then they get a refund. People shouldn’t have to lose their insurance
if they change jobs. The benefits should travel with the person,
not with the job. Here’s the big question. Who should decide? We think you should decide, not Washington. Under our plan, the federal government would
make a defined contribution to your health care security. We’d cap the rate of growth of that contribution
to eliminate waste, to encourage competition, but we would also give more help to the poor
and the sick, less help to the rich. Support would go to only those who needed
it. And under our plan, we would put you in control. Only you know what works best for you and
your family. Our reforms should offer people not just the
dignity of self-determination, but the comfort of community. Health care, health care is a deeply personal
issue. When your health care is at stake, you want
your doctor to be someone you trust. You want somebody you know, someone who knows
you. In Janesville, Janna and I are more likely
to see our doctors at the YMCA or at the school play then at the clinic, just as it can and
should be. You don’t want be just the next person in
a line. You want the doctor to be like family, but
the health care law is forcing doctors to close their practices. It’s taking this relationship out of our
hands. And if we reform health care the right way,
free enterprise can control costs and increase quality without this kind of bullying. Markets aren’t bleak tundras where the strong
dominate the weak as progressives all too often imagine. They’re pipelines of knowledge. They bring crucial decisions to the family
where they belong. And it’s not just health care. We have to apply these principles to all the
challenges of the day: defense, energy, education, immigration, taxes. We have to explain how our policies will improve
people’s lives. The answer is, we will use the power and the
resources of the government to give people the room to thrive. We will maintain our partnership our society
has had with our government in the past even in this new era of an aging society and a
global economy. This, this is a complete vision of conservatism. It’s what we’re striving for. It’s not a vision of petty materialism. It’s not one of lonely individuals overseen
by a massive government. It’s one of moral nourishment, of self-fulfillment,
of growth, and opportunity. We can’t treat politics like a game. We aren’t competing for a trophy. We’re competing over the country’s future. We’re trying to determine what kind of people
we’re going to be. We have to recognize the stakes. We have to get serious, and I believe we will. Winston Churchill once said, “The Americans
can be counted upon to do the right thing, only after they’ve exhausted all the other
possibilities.” He got it right. Sometimes other people can see us better than
we see ourselves. In fact, I think the best description of the
American spirit was written by a Frenchman, Alexis de Tocqueville. We remember Tocqueville for his keen study
of our culture. We remember his insight that our local communities
are schools of freedom. They teach us how to see past our differences. They teach us how to work together. But he also had a sense for politics. He said that the Senate was home to “the
celebrities of America,” that there was hardly a member who hadn’t done an illustrious
deed. The House, on the other hand, was home to
“obscure persons, often the eye seeks in vain for a celebrated man within it.” It’s kind of humbling, you know. On a night like this, I’m less eager to
stand out and much more eager to join in. To receive the Kristol Award is to join a
fellowship of scholars. It’s to take part in the community of ideas. You’re the people who got me interested
in politics. These scholars, they taught me how to take
it seriously. So I’m grateful, and I’m grateful for
tonight. You’re quite the crowd for an evening’s
company. And your dedication to truth and your pursuit
of justice, you’re a great testament to the American idea. Thank you. Thank you very much.

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