Several high-profile Republicans, including potential 2024 presidential contenders, gathered in South Carolina over the weekend to discuss their opposition to “woke ideology” and outline a conservative vision for the next White House race.
Hosted by Palmetto Family, an organization that promotes biblical values, the Vision ’24 gathering included notable attendees such as former South Carolina governor and Donald Trump’s U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley and tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, who recently entered the presidential race.
In addition to the conference, other possible 2024 contenders, such as Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, signed a letter opposing the Biden administration’s support of a federal labor rule that allows retirement plans to consider environmental, social, and governance factors.
Throughout the event, participants criticized policies related to equity concerning race, gender, and public health, and other efforts that they view as threats to conservative lifestyles. Discussions included topics such as transgender athletes in sports, classroom instruction, gender-affirming care for minors, and collegiate diversity programs.
Both Ramaswamy and Haley are known for their opposition to “woke ideology.” Ramaswamy, who wrote the book “Woke, Inc.: Inside Corporate America’s Social Justice Scam,” focused on the impact of “woke ideology” on businesses.
Speakers such as Republican Senators John Kennedy of Louisiana and Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee spoke against “woke-ism,” while former Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers criticized “woke-minded” Washington politicians for “crushing the spirit of American educators and entrepreneurs and the American spirit.”
While some attendees, including Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, focused on protecting children from transgender athletes, others such as Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina criticized “woke folk” who criticized him for not adhering to “woke ideology.”
Former Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard also weighed in on the issue, criticizing her former party for being “driven by this motivation of cowardly wokeness” and having leaders who “advocate for the mutilation of children in the name of so-called gender-affirming care.”
Overall, the gathering demonstrated the growing opposition among Republicans to what they view as the spread of “woke ideology” and the increasing focus on issues related to race and gender in American society. As the 2024 presidential election approaches, these discussions are likely to continue and play a significant role in shaping the political landscape.