The New York Young Republican Club, the nation’s oldest Young Republican club, celebrated its 110th annual Gala on Saturday night with a black-tie event. The Gala, which the club boasts has run without interruption during both World Wars and the Covid lockdowns, featured a large number of prominent local and national Republican figures. As with many Republican events, especially in deep-blue New York, the accusations of sympathizing with neo-Nazis and bigots flew early and often - yet that is only one side of the event the media is willing to tell.
Full disclosure: I attended the Gala as both a member of the press and a dues-paying member of the New York Young Republicans. I, like over a thousand other people in the last two years, joined the club to help fight the onslaught of radical leftist ideology in our home state. Arguments over tactics and associations occur within the membership regularly, and the club is ready to accommodate a diverse set of voices from its conservative base. I personally disagree with their endorsement of Andrew Giuliani in the Republican primary for Governor, and think it’s too early to endorse Donald Trump in 2024. That is irrelevant, however, as I simultaneously appreciate their activism and get out the vote efforts.
Attending the Gala was a “who’s who” of “controversial” figures, which usually means figures that the Democrats don’t like more than they don’t like regular Republicans. There was Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump Jr, and James O’Keefe. There were also three Congressmen-elect, Cory Mills (FL), Mike Collins (GA) and George Santos (NY), a U.S. Senate Candidate Joe Pinion, and NYC Councilwoman Vickie Paladino. The most controversial figures at the Gala were members of the Freedom Party of Austria, Trump allies Roger Stone and Steve Bannon, Commentators Raheem Kassam and Jack Posobiec, and Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene.
Newsday put out a hit piece on George Santos the day of the Gala, saying that he was attending an event “featuring many far-right American and European figures, including Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene” and that “the guest list includes members of the far-right Austrian Freedom Party founded by a former Nazi SS officer.” By that logic, anyone who drives a Mercedes or Volkswagen should be plastered all over the media as “Nazi sympathizers.” Or anyone that uses an IBM computer. Or perhaps, every member of the Party of American slavery, the Ku Klux Klan, and Jim Crow laws: The Democrats.
The Democrats, who have no sense of irony it seems, jumped all over the associations. Representative Jerry Nadler said, “The event’s headliners have built brands on the backs of hatred and bigotry. The New York Young Republican Club — and national Republicans — should be ashamed.” Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine tweeted, “Manhattan is going to feel incredibly off tomorrow - racists, anitsemites, homophobes, transphobes, and other threats to democracy are getting top billing at a gala hosted by an NY Republican club,” and “This disgusting, dangerous event will feature some of the most hateful people on the far-right, including Marjorie Taylor-Greene, Brannon, and literal neo-nazis.”
That is not the event I attended.
Bill Spadea, the top-rated morning host in New Jersey, emceed an event in which the entire audience (which was talking during his opening statement) immediately fell silent with the simple words “please rise” and in unison recited the Pledge of Allegiance and the Star Spangled Banner. The Gala left a table empty for the members of the Armed Forces who are missing or were killed in action. There was a palpable love for America, her ideals, and her potential, evident throughout the evening. Anyone who thinks that this is a group of neo-Nazis and bigots is coming from a place of hatred and ignorance.
The content of the speeches that followed were strong political rhetoric, language of fighting, of warfare, of taking on a regime. This is no different than the language of “resistance” spoken ever since President Trump took his oath of office, or the language of 2008 Barack Obama: “If they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun.” Yet the Washington Post, again with no sense of irony, says that “The GOP has created a safe space for musing about violent rebellion.” It wasn’t members of the GOP who burned the country down in the summer of 2020.
Jack Posobiec even said from the podium, “Today’s warfare is not the one of sword and shield; it is the warfare of tweet and meme,” to resounding applause. Does that sound like a call for a violent overthrow of the government? Yet the media does not report on that line, only the one that preceded it:“This is a generational conflict that is fought in the heart, that is fought in the mind, and that is fought in the soul, on every single level.”
Then there was Marjorie Taylor Greene, who was joking about how the entire media blamed her and Steve Bannon for January 6 riots. In her words: “I want to tell you something: If Steve Bannon and I had organized that, we would have won. Not to mention, we would’ve been armed.” Out of context, in print, and with a history of hatred for this person, this is obviously a horrific line. In context, in person, and an understanding of the ludicrousness of the notion, this drew a lot of laughs.
What the media won’t talk about were the parts of Greene’s speech which were utterly uncontroversial. Talking about how 5 million people have illegally entered the United States since Joe Biden became President. How 300 people are dying of fentanyl poisoning per day. How the drug cartels make billions of dollars selling drugs to Americans. These are legitimate problems facing the country, yet they are being drowned out by a media that would rather see divisiveness within our borders than unity at the problems facing all of us.
This is why I attended the Gala. While there are many things I disagree with, the fact remains that the problems that were highlighted are true issues facing our state and our country. The enthusiasm for real change is far more palpable in that room than in many other rooms I’ve been in. The results they achieve in getting honest, hard-working conservative voices into positions of power in a state that is bluer than a Redd Foxx comedy album is undeniable.
As Greene said about that night: “The media will attack you and attack you, and it does not matter. It’s just noise.” No Republican should take what they read in a newspaper or website that hates them without a gallon of salt.
Moshe Hill is a political columnist and Senior Fellow at Amariah, an America First Zionist organization. Moshe has a weekly column in the Queens Jewish Link, and has been published in Daily Wire, CNS News, and other outlets. You can follow Moshe on his blog www.aHillwithaView.com, facebook.com/aHillwithaView, and twitter.com/HillWithView. A Hill With a View is now on YouTube! Subscribe today to get the latest content. Just search “A Hill with a View” to get started. Get A Hill with a View directly to your inbox! Text HILLVIEW to 22828 to sign up to the newsletter.