MOORLACH UPDATE — Newport Mesa Tea Party — November 12, 2016

On Thursday evening, I attended a reception at Vanguard University of Southern California for former United States Attorney General John Ashcroft. While he served as the Governor of Missouri, he paid a visit to Orange County. He was kind enough to give me a half-hour of his precious time for an interview on my cable television program more than twenty-three years ago. It was a privilege to be with him again and to hear his remarks on religious liberty.

From there I visited with the Newport Mesa Tea Party. I received an e-mail earlier in the week to see if I could attend their "last" meeting. I have had the privilege to speak to this group a couple of times over the years, so attending this historic meeting seemed like a must.

The Daily Pilot provides its perspectives on the occasion. For those who were unable to attend, you can see it here at

BONUS: Our intimate Veterans Day Service was very special as we reflected on the "fire station" located at Crystal Cove (a background used below). There are also ten bunkers on the west side of Catalina Island and all provide excellent views of the ocean, as does the one at Crystal Cove. It was used to look for the Japanese Fleet, as radar was in its infancy, the Navy was out to sea, the Army was undermanned, and the military port at Long Beach was the most vulnerable of all this nation’s west coast Naval bases.

Many thanks to Dan Worthington for his presentation on this bunker and his restoration efforts on behalf of State Parks and the residents of Orange County. Dan collaborated closely with the Fort MacArthur Museum on the project and provided numerous insights on this critical World War II facility. Thanks also go to Dale Dykema, who provided the invocation, and Diane Pritchett, who led the Pledge of Allegiance.

With a beautiful day, we could see Catalina Island, where special forces, like the Green Berets and NAVY Seals were founded during World War II. Even the CIA may have been incubated on this nearby island during this era. We have so much history to commemorate and we hope to provide educational Veterans Day ceremonies in the future.

Newport-Mesa tea party chapter ends after 6 years with celebration of Trump’s election

By Luke Money

After six years of monthly meetings, discussions and debates on issues facing the community, state and nation, the Newport-Mesa Tea Party Patriots gathered for the last time on Thursday night in Costa Mesa.

The final meeting came just two days after arguably the greatest triumph for a national movement that has long battled the political establishment: the election of Donald Trump as the country’s next president.

"We pretty much accomplished our goal — we have an outsider as the president," local tea party leader and founder Tom Pollitt said Thursday. "So we feel pretty good about that."

The national tea party movement touts conservative principles such as smaller government, lower taxes and policies opposed to illegal immigration.

Pollitt told the crowd of about 60 people in the Halecrest Park clubhouse that the local tea party chapter is disbanding partly because he has decided to focus his attention elsewhere — perhaps on starting a local Christian school.

It’s possible, he said, that the group could be re-formed at some point.

"It was the tea party and the tea party movement throughout the country that made people aware that there was a problem, and it got them stirred up," Pollitt said. "The establishment was the problem, and now we’ve got somebody who is outside the establishment and we’re going to have some real changes."

Several local, state and federal politicians spoke at the final meeting, including Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), state Sen. John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa), Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer, Newport Beach City Councilman Scott Peotter and Costa Mesa Councilman-elect Allan Mansoor.

The meeting was festive, with speakers and other attendees celebrating Republican Trump’s triumph over Democrat Hillary Clinton in Tuesday’s presidential election.

"What we’ve got now is a great opportunity to reach out to our fellow Americans and say, ‘Give us a new chance in the Republican Party; give us a chance to show we are for working people in our country and we are first and foremost for the well-being of the United States,’" Rohrabacher said.

Peotter said the local tea party chapter "has been one of the few reliably conservative organizations in this area." He praised its members for supporting like-minded candidates.

Noting that Clinton beat Trump in Orange County, usually a Republican stronghold, he said: "How we’re going to change and win back our county is to get out there and work. So keep up the good work, even though the tea party is no longer here."

Twitter: @LukeMMoney


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