Published Date: 
Fri, 2014-03-07

Contact: Meghan Snyder, (202) 347-9388[email protected]

Washington, D.C. – Today, the Chairman of the American Conservative Union (ACU), Al Cardenas, addressed an enthusiastic crowd of conservative activists at CPAC 2014 – a celebration of 50 years of the ACU and America’s largest gathering of conservative leaders and activists. 

The following are excerpts of Chairman Cardenas’ Friday afternoon remarks to CPAC 2014:

"Under Castro, the careless life of a 12 year old suddenly became one plagued with worry for my family and friends. I was racked with despair at a young age to see the hurt and pain that filled our days as Castro’s agents murdered friends and destroyed our livelihood. We were forced to surrender the businesses we built by hand.  My grandfather put 40 years of hard work into his energy distribution business only to have it taken away right in front of his eyes.

 "What was so exciting to me about America was that anyone could be a success. Many great success stories came from meager beginnings - providing inspiration to those who could think big, focus and work hard. With the crushing weight of higher taxes, more regulations and greater uncertainty caused by an overpowering Administration, the dream of the young entrepreneur setting up shop in their parent's garage is dwindling. To this administration, a strong free market and the businesses that comprise it are the enemy.

"The American Conservative Union believes that Americans are desperately seeking hope; searching for a more powerful movement that address the challenges our country is facing with bold time tested principles; in a confident and determined manner with solutions, optimism and a vision of a better tomorrow for all."

The Honorable Al Cardenas is Chairman of the ACU and a senior partner at Squire Sanders LLP. He previously served as Vice-Chairman then Chairman of the Republican Party of Florida. At just twenty-five years old, he served as Florida Co- Chair of Reagan’s presidential campaigns and then headed the transition team for President Reagan's US Department of Commerce. Cardenas has frequently appeared on network television, CNN, FOX, MSNBC, Univision, CNN Espanol, and Telemundo. He is also a regular opinion editorial columnist. He was elected by his peers nationally as one of The Best Lawyers in America from 2007 through 2010.

Presenting Sponsors: One America News Network, Tea Party Patriots, Townhall Media/Regnery Publishing, The Washington Times

Associate Sponsors: Koch Industries, Persecuted, The Movie

Supporting Sponsors: Altria, CitizenLink, The Heritage Foundation, How Money Walks, Intercollegiate Studies Institute, Liberty Alliance/Inbox First, The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, Motion Picture Association of America, National Review, Red Alert Politics, Tea Party News Network

Contributing Sponsors: The Blaze, Citizens United, Leadership Institute, National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee, Red Card Solution

Participating Sponsors: 60 Plus Association, Alliance of European Conservatives and Reformists, Sportsman Channel's Original Series Amazing America with Sarah Palin, America the movie, The American Petroleum Institute, Tradition, Family, Property, Americans for Prosperity, Americans for Tax Reform, Ashbrook Center at Ashland University, BigDawg Music Radio, Christians United for Israel, College Republican National Committee, Competitive Enterprise Institute , Convert! Integrated Marketing, Eagle Forum, Eberle Associates, Inc., Empower Action Group, Fabrizio Lee, Facebook, Freedom Alliance, Gravis Marketing, GW's Graduate School of Political Management, IJ Review, Justice Fellowship, Let Freedom Ring, Policy Issues Institute, 1260 WRC AM - Intelligent Talk Radio, TMA Direct, Turning Point USA, UNFAIR, Young America's Foundation