Centennial Institute kicks off Western Conservative Summit

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Colorado Christian University’s Centennial Institute kicked off its 13th Western Conservative Summit in Aurora, Colorado on Friday with a call for action and leadership.

The two-day event features a lineup of conservative speakers under the theme “Time to Saddle Up and Ride,” which organizers say is a push for “conservatives to boldly and courageously confront our nation’s challenges.”

“We are proud to be Americans,” Centennial Institute Director Jeff Hunt said Friday. “We are proud of our country’s founding principles and we plan to lead our communities.”

“We are Western conservatives, which means we don’t wait around for Washington, D.C. to solve our problems,” he said. “We solve our own problems.”

Organizers said 2,000 people registered to attend in person this year, and people from all 50 states are tuning in remotely.

Among this year’s speakers are Republican Reps. Lauren Boebert and Ken Buck of Colorado and Jim banks of Indiana, who will attend a congressional panel on immigration Friday afternoon.

Arkansas GOP gubernatorial nominee Sarah Huckabee Sanders will headline the summit’s Saturday evening session.

Ms. Sanders, a former White House press secretary in the Trump administration and daughter of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, secured the Republican nomination to replace the term-limited GOP incumbent Gov. Asa Hutchinson in a decisive victory in late May.

Other Trump administration insiders, including former Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and former White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, are also slated to speak.

Former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a Democrat from Hawaii is scheduled to speak during Saturday’s evening session.

The Washington Times’ Cheryl Chumley, author of “LOCKDOWN: The Socialist Plan to Take Away Your Freedom,” will speak Friday afternoon.

Mr. Hunt said the summit remains non-partisan and does not endorse or oppose any candidate or political party for office.

In addition to a wide panel of speakers, the event will host more than 30 separate workshops and close to 50 exhibitors throughout the weekend.

“Take advantage of every moment this weekend,” Mr. Hunt told the crowd gathered for Friday’s kickoff. “We need something like this, fellow conservatives. We’ve taken a lot of beatings recently, and to have a place where we can gather, we can be proud of our country, we can focus on the most important issues and then be activated to go make a difference.”

“Take advantage of every moment,” he said.

– Jennifer Harper contributed to this story

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