The 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference still has more than a day to go — but it’s off to a tremendously weird start.
While the conference has featured plenty of valuable speeches and events for right-wing activists, it has also been filled with the type of odd moments and outbursts that have come to characterize right-wing gatherings.
Here are five of the lowlights:
Sean Hannity’s Creepy Joke
Fox News host Sean Hannity pumped up the crowd with his Friday morning speech about how liberals are stupid — his words, not mine — but one of the jokes that he told to the “young, good-looking crowd” fell completely flat.
“I can look out in the crowd, I kinda have Fox X-ray vision, and I can see that some of you women, you don’t even know it yet, but you’re pregnant,” Hannity said. “It’s not your fault. It’s not his fault.”
It was weird — and foreshadowed some even weirder sex talk later in the day.
Scott Walker’s ISIS Plan
During his speech on Thursday, Wisconsin governor Scott Walker explained how he would defeat ISIS: By crushing them like they’re kindergarten teachers.
“I want a commander-in-chief who will do everything in their power to ensure that the threats from radical Islamic terrorists do not wash up on American soil,” Walker explained. “We need a leader with that kind of confidence. If I can take on 100,000 protesters, I can do the same across the world.”
Surprisingly, this was not the first time that Walker compared peaceful protesters to ultraviolent terrorists.
Meanwhile, in the convention hall, Walker’s tough talk had the crowd chanting, “Run, Scott, run!”
Donald Trump’s Birther Obsession
Reality TV star Donald Trump is still pretending that he may run for president — but his CPAC speech provided a handy reminder of how well that would go for him.
Trump’s address was well designed for an audience that has always mistrusted President Obama’s soaring rhetoric (“Common Core is bad. Bad! Second Amendment is good!” Trump declared at one point), but as usual, the Donald couldn’t resist a good birther crack.
That’s right: According to Trump, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, and Donald Trump are all birthers. Trump is just better at it.
Rick Santorum’s Awful Joke
Trump wasn’t the only CPAC speaker to try out a birther line. Former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum tried to bring up the conspiracy with a touch of humor.
“In fact the president’s popularity is so bad around the world today that I heard this report from a source that the Kenyan government is actually developing proof that Barack Obama was actually born in America,” Santorum said.
About three people laughed.
Phil Robertson’s Strange Speech
No CPAC speech so far has been stranger than the stem-winder uncorked by Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson, who was awarded the conference’s “Andrew Breitbart Defender of the First Amendment Award.”
Robertson’s half-hour speech began as a sermon in defense of religious liberty — and then skipped the rails when he began ranting about sexually transmitted diseases.
“110 million Americans now have a sexually transmitted illness,” Robertson warned. “I don’t want you, America, to get sick. I don’t want you to become ill. I don’t want you to come down with a debilitating disease! I don’t want you to die early! You’re disease-free and she’s disease-free, you marry, you keep your sex right there. You won’t get sick from a sexually transmitted disease.”
Predictably, Robertson thinks that America’s STD problem is liberals’ fault.
“It’s the revenge of the hippies!” he raged. “Sex, drugs, and rock and roll have come back to haunt us.”
Robertson’s speech at the 2016 Republican National Convention should be a blast.