Smart Girl Politics hosted their 5th annual Smart Girl Summit this past weekend, August 9th and 10th, in Indianapolis, IN. Founders Stacy Mott and Teri Christoph did a great job organizing this year’s event, and they should be quite proud of the outcome.
I was on the agenda to participate in the first panel, "Minority Outreach: Politics or Pandering." Kira Davis, who is an actress, blogger, video blogger, and blog talk radio host, moderated the panel on which Britanny Morrett of the Libre Initiative and I participated. The discussion centered around whether or not it was pandering for the Republican party to target minorities and how we go about reaching into minority communities. Many ideas were bandied about, and the audience chimed in with various questions and comments. We are all aware that we have our work cut out for us. The Republican party does not have a message problem, but we acknowledge that we do have a messaging problem, not one we cannot overcome with wise and loving outreach that meets people where they are. I believe everyone came away feeling inspired and hopeful.
Other panels included the following topics: fighting back against women on the left, the Common Core, video messaging, reaching the youth, and getting involved at the state level. The speakers were Indiana Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann; Dan Bongino, candidate for Maryland’s 6th Congressional district; Jenny Beth Martin of Tea Party Patriots; video guru who has blown the whistle on ACORN, Planned Parenthood, and others, James O’Keefe; Ben Yount of the Franklin Center; Kira Davis, vlogger sensation; Erika Harold, former Miss America and Republican candidate for the 13th Congressional District seat in the State of Illinois; Karen Handel, candidate for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in 2014 from Georgia; and Katie Pavlich, author, editor, and FOX News Contributor. Katie left the Smart Girl Summit the newly-crowned winner of the Andrew Breitbart Spirit Award, which she received at the Banquet and Awards Dinner Saturday night. The Summit also included a trip to the gun range and a women’s self-defense training session.
The event was not without controversy, however, as the GOP received some criticism for not sending a representative to this grassroots function. Kira Davis took to the microphone for her "Rant Like a Champ" presentation and began by addressing the GOP directly. See that rant here and read more about it here. Her words led to an RNC reply. Kira writes:
Both the RNC and the NRCC reached out to the ladies of Smart Girl to offer assistance for future events. Lets give credit where credit is due. Send out a tweet or a message to them and say thanks for hearing us! Don’t stop now!
Below are some pictures of the weekend’s activities. (Click on the collage to get a closer view of those particular images.) I am most grateful for my friend and O4P activist, Laura Hendricks Hatton, who took some of the photographs you’ll see. She also made and donated iPhone cases with the logo of my very own MotivationTruth and the logo for the Smart Girl Politics Armed & Fabulous gun range event. You’ll see pictures of those cell phone cases at the end.
Enjoy, and plan to attend next year’s Smart Girl Summit!
UPDATE: A huge "thank you" to Reboot Congress on Twitter for providing the video of the panel I sat on with Kira Davis and Brittney Morrett:
He has also provided videos of the other panels and speeches. Watch them at his blog, RebootCongress.net.