By Alex Pappas — The Daily Caller 8:52 AM 10/02/2010
In 104-degree weather last weekend, legendary entertainer Pat Boone helped attract 600 Tea Partiers to a rally in Beverly Hills, Calif., the backyard of some of the country’s most outspoken liberal celebrities.
Boone, an outspoken political activist, told The Daily Caller in an interview that the Beverly Hills Tea Party that he helped organize all started when a neighbor he didn’t know simply approached his house, rang the bell on his gate and asked a question.
“She said, ‘We need a Tea Party in Beverly Hills. Would you like to help?’” he recalled. “And I said, ‘You’ve come to the right place.’”
Boone, also joined by guests like former Saturday Night Live actress Victoria Jackson and publisher Andrew Breitbart, emceed the event Sept. 26 in front of the landmark Beverly Hills sign on Santa Monica Blvd.
“It’s a grassroots citizens movement, not a Democrat or Republican thing…It’s just citizens,” Boone said he told those who showed up.
Boone also wrote a song that he preformed for those at the event, titled, “I am an American.” During the interview with TheDC, he sung the chorus to that song:
“I am an American, born in freedom where the eagles fly,” he sung. “The root-tootin flag waving citizens—proud to say I will be till I die. I love the Pledge of Allegiance, one nation under God. If you can’t say it with me, than you’re free to leave by God. Cause I am an American…My blood’s red, white and blue.”
He said the Tea Party rally sent “great ripples and waves throughout the [entertainment] industry.”
But while the Tea Party was notable in that it was held in perhaps one of the most unlikely conservative cities, Boone argues that there are more Hollywood conservatives than people realize.
“There’s a growing phalanx of conservatives,” he said. “They’ve been closeted for years because of the intimidation factor.”
“The prevailing mindset is ‘go with the liberal flow,’ and if you’re not in sync and in step with that, there’s something wrong with you,” he said. “If you’re a conservative, especially if you talk out loud about conservative things, or take conservative positions, you may be passed over for that next job that you were right for and would have otherwise been cast for.”
Boone referenced when Ronald Reagan first ran for governor of California and only a handful of fellow Hollywood stars got behind him. “I, Piper Laurie and Victor Jory, Wendell Corey, as it turned out — Corey, Laurie, Jory and Boone, sounds like a bad law firm — were his initial supporters from the entertainment industry,” he said.
Toward the end of that campaign, Boone said, conservatives like stars John Wayne and Roy Rogers eventually came out to support him, and when Reagan ran for governor a second time, others like Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin finally got behind him. But they were slow to openly support Reagan, Boone said, “because of the intimidation factor.”
It was their view that it is those in powerful positions — who have the ability to hire, fire and determine who gets cast — who are predominately liberal.
Boone, who also serves as a national spokesman for the 60 Plus Association and writes a weekly column, doesn’t hide his disgust with the current occupant of the White House.
So asked to name who he could get behind in 2012, Boone mentioned Indiana Rep. Mike Pence, South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, whom he recently traveled with to Israel.
“Anyone of them could be a 150 percent better than what we have,” he said.