"For the Sake of America: Pray, Vote, Stand" was the theme for the 2018 Values Voter Summit, and if the enthusiasm of the 2,000 attendees is any indication, values voters -- the core of President Trump's base -- are now heading home to do all three. The energy in the room continued to build with every speaker. On Saturday, the crowd gave Vice President Mike Pence repeated standing ovations as he listed President Trump's promise-fulfilling actions. The first sitting Vice President to address the Summit reflected, "It's hard to believe that it's just been two years since values voters delivered a great victory for the American people...It's been two years of action. It's been two years of results. It's been two years of promises made and promises kept. And we're just getting started." However, to keep these successes going, he exhorted the crowd to mobilize. "With 45 days to go, my fellow conservatives, as you'd heard at this summit, now is the time for the sake of America to pray, to vote, to stand. And I know you will. The other side is mobilized, and some say they're motivated as never before. But I say we must match -- in fact, I say we must surpass -- the energy of the American left and their enthusiasm and passion. And if we do, we will win." After his speech, the Vice President delighted the crowd by returning to the stage to meet attendees down front to shake hands and take photos.
Much of the media covering the Summit were surprised by the high enthusiasm in light of the allegations against Brett Kavanaugh. But the reality is that the more the president is attacked for fulfilling promises, the more resolve there is to stand with him. This was reflected in the thunderous applause Majority Leader Mitch McConnell received on Friday when he declared, "President Trump has nominated a stunningly successful individual. You've watched the fight. You've watched the tactics... In the very near future, Judge Kavanaugh will be on the United States Supreme Court." As I told Fox News's "Special Report with Bret Baier" on Friday night, Mitch McConnell isn't given to hyperbole or exaggeration. That was a significant statement for him to make. He knows the Supreme Court was front and center for values voters in the 2016 election and it remains so.
What was also clear at this year's Summit is that values voters are committed to supporting the president's agenda, and his judicial nominees. Since the Left can't get its agenda adopted by legislative bodies – it has turned to the courts and is desperate to maintain its control over them. That's why the vast majority of grassroots conservatives think that the Senate is handling this the right way. The accuser will be allowed to testify but the Senate will not allow the Left to derail the process.
This theme was weaved through the rest of Saturday's speakers -- including Dr. Sebastian Gorka, Fox News's Todd Starnes, Representative Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), former Education Secretary Dr. Bill Bennett and best-selling author and NRATV host Dana Loesch.
The 13th annual Values Voter Summit certainly made one thing clear about values voters: coming to Washington isn't a pastime for you. You are an active participant in draining the swamp. By bringing your energy here, you are putting an exclamation point on the message of Faith, Family and Freedom!
But our work is just getting started. Get inspired to continue living out your values by viewing the full archive of this year's speeches on valuesvotersummit.org. And we hope to see you at next year's Values Voter Summit!