Condoleezza Rice kicks off California Republican convention, calls for strong U.S. leadership in Ukraine
March 15th, 2014
08:20 PM ET
9 years ago

Condoleezza Rice kicks off California Republican convention, calls for strong U.S. leadership in Ukraine

(CNN) – Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke at the annual California Republicans convention Saturday as the party faces an uphill battle in a state that has turned more and more blue.

Some speculated Rice would run in the Republican presidential primaries in 2008, but she wasn't interested. She left George W. Bush's White House in 2009 and returned to Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, as a political science professor.

As a featured speaker at the California Republican Party luncheon in Burlingame, Rice touched on many issues central to the Republican’s party’s future – from economic inequality and education, to foreign policy and military strength.

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“We are a party in the state of California that needs some rebuilding, but we are also a country, the United State of America, that needs some rebuilding,” said Rice.

Rice also will headline the National Republican Congressional Committee at its annual March dinner later this month.
Rice called on values of individual responsibility and limited government and described the creativity and technological innovation she sees as a product of a strong private sector in Silicon Valley.

However, Rice’s speech also was one of inclusion and of community support, especially when it comes to education and social mobility.

California is the home of about 2.5 million of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. Immigration has become a central political issue in the state. Republicans are facing more and more pressure to follow up on promises of immigration reform and Rice touched on its importance.

“We have to continue to be a place where people who want be a part of that dream can come and be welcomed within our laws, but also within our values,” Rice said.

Rice also commented on the ongoing crisis in Ukraine and called on the audience to remember America’s own roots of revolution and rebellion.

“We have to continue to speak for those people who want the liberties that we have,” Rice said.

Rice echoed the words of President Ronald Reagan and called for “peace through strength.”

“We cannot sustain an active foreign policy without a strong military,” Rice told the audience.

“If we leave a vacuum, it will be filled by the likes of Bashar al-Assad in Syria, who’s tearing apart the Middle East, by the terrorists in Iraq and Syria where al Qaeda has been reborn,” Rice said. “By the likes of (Russian President) Vladimir Putin.”

“That is a world that will not be good for our interest or our values, and so America has to lead.”

Filed under: California • Condoleezza Rice • GOP • Republican
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. just asking

    queue up the usual cast of leftist clowns in here with their stock insults and war on woman. i can already see the hate and frothing at the mouth of you lefties at the sight of this highly intelligent black conservative woman. democrats have nobody to match her and it really bothers you. we can tell.

    March 15, 2014 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  2. ChrisM

    No More Wars, Condi. No More sending Americans to the other side of the world to Die, Condi. !!!

    March 15, 2014 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  3. Pk duster

    Miss rice was a bully for the bush gang

    March 15, 2014 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  4. Pk duster

    Miss rice should use her brain to help the gop they sure need some help

    March 15, 2014 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  5. Dr. Cole

    As a life long Republican...I truly wish that Rice would run for President. She has so much to offer our country.

    March 15, 2014 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  6. Name Uche Agonsi

    Essua's skin, Jacob's voice. I hear a blue voice in a red jacket outfit. Long time no talk, Ms Rice. The last rebuilding you did got us recession.

    March 15, 2014 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  7. king

    lesson dems we cannot afford to stand by and allow Russia to ease their way through Europe taking down one country after another like the nazis did back in the 30s, then get surprised when the whole europe is in flames, i think thats called appeasement. these countries are like bullies and corporate greed, they never satisfy until they have an empire. we dems need to take the lead and show the repubs and the world that dems are strong about national security. yes weve been fighting for 10 years now and we are weary, but we cannot afford to let our guards down. we need to nib this Russian take over in the bud right now before we have world war three on our hands. if Russia take over countries in Europe, it going to be harder for them to give them back up, or stop taking countries over. Obama need to send the Atlantic fleet to the black sea. he need to mobilize all his European arm forces in Germany and Italy, and start having exercises with our Europe allies in and around Ukraine. Obama need to act now because the longer you waits thinking that Putin will act logically the more ground Putin will take, and the closer we will find ourselves fighting world war III.

    March 15, 2014 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  8. jillib

    Only a fool would give any credence to Rice's opinion on matters of national security/foreign policy. Her record of failure is cemented.

    March 16, 2014 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  9. FidyCents

    Strong leadership is what this country needs. The progressive loons running the Democrat party are clueless about this. First Clinton and now Kerry? The world is laughing, and Madam Rice is dead right.

    March 16, 2014 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  10. Thomas

    We wouldn't be in the weak spot if Rice and Bush didn't acted smatter and less reactionary in both Afghanistan and Iraq.

    The USA squandered precious resources and military strength , in moral and spirit .

    March 16, 2014 03:51 am at 3:51 am |
  11. Rogue351

    Not our country. Not our problem. The GOP / Tea Party sees dollar signs in huge military government contracts if we involve the USA in yet another cold war, or worse a real war with Russia. Go ahead GOP start up another cold war and watch your chances for a white house bid drop to zero. If the GOP / Tea Party was actually listening to the people they would know that America is sick of war. We are sick of spending more on military contracts that all other countries combined while being told we do not deserve health care, or a far wage. Funneling more money into military government contacts puts even more money in the pockets of the people who are already hold much more than their fair share.

    March 16, 2014 04:26 am at 4:26 am |
  12. polite centrist

    I hope she runs for POTUS. She'd be much better than any of the current wannabe's.

    March 16, 2014 05:25 am at 5:25 am |
  13. croaton999

    This is what leadership looks like.

    March 16, 2014 05:55 am at 5:55 am |
  14. Tampa Tim

    Since we spend more on military than the next 13 countries combined, I really doubt we have a weak military. Under her watch, along with Bush and Cheney, we saw North Korea get nukes, Putin take Georgia, the destabilization of the Middle East, and the ability of the former president to duck shoes thrown at him. Sadly, Condi is as silly as Fox News moron Charles Krautheimer.

    March 16, 2014 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  15. Jan Nappylotto

    Obama is doing a fine job on the Ukraine situation. Nothing says "I'm serious" like confence calling from vacation in Florida.

    Obama: Screw being a world leader, takes too much time from vacationing and fundraising. Lets drop a couple billion on them and call it a day.

    March 16, 2014 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  16. Marie MD

    Another war criminal comes out of the hole of lies of WMDs. Rice you, like the shrub and cheney and others, need to keep quiet.
    @JanNappylotto, the shrub wins hands down on vacation time. A little bit over a year of 8 years of the worst presidency in the country's history.

    March 16, 2014 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  17. J anthony

    Posturing and platitudes, no vision, no ideas. Same old "they must fear us" nonsense. When you are tthe biggest most fearsome military-industrial-complex on the planet and everyone knows it you don't need to go around talking tough. War is not about our image or "democracy building" ,its about money and power. Go ask some of our vets what they think we've accomplished with our so-called democracy-building around the world.

    March 16, 2014 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  18. Ed

    Obama created an environment ripe for Russia's aggression. The writing was on the wall for some time and Putin pounced on his weakness.

    March 16, 2014 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  19. Anonymous

    Condoleezza Rice 2016

    Iraq .... Iraq .... Iraq

    March 16, 2014 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. don in albuquerque

    Yep, Dr Cole, as a former member of the group responsible for needlessly filling thousands of graves she has a lot to offer.
    Like more death, and destruction. Thanks but no thanks.

    March 16, 2014 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  21. Doug CA

    A gathering of idiots.....

    March 16, 2014 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  22. len

    Ask the 5, 000 Americans that gave their lives for a lie in Iraq if she is a strong leader. How some of you folks forget about the lies.
    Maybe you should put some skin in the game, volunteer for the military or have your kids or grandkids volunteer! !!

    March 16, 2014 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  23. Gurgyl

    These Republican Clowns take us to Wars to loot this nation again? Nonsense, vote all these GOP idiots out immediately to save USA.

    March 16, 2014 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  24. Lizzie

    And the liberals and democrats tell us they love women, only if the follow without questions, walk 5 feet behind their leader and bow when confronted, cover their heads and when ask to jump ask how high.

    March 16, 2014 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  25. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Obama created an environment ripe for Russia's aggression. The writing was on the wall for some time and Putin pounced on his weakness.

    Hey genius, was Obama responsible when Putin invaded Georgia? I thought Bush was president then.

    March 16, 2014 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
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