If you go
What: Routt County Republican Central Committee's annual Lincoln Day Dinner
When: 5:30 p.m. Friday
Where: Steamboat Springs Community Center, 1605 Lincoln Ave.
Cost: $20 for adults, $10 for students, free for those 5 years old and younger
Dinner: Attendees are asked to take a potluck side dish; meat and bread will be provided by the party
Steamboat Springs This year's Lincoln Day Dinner will be a time for getting back to GOP basics, local Republican Party chairman and retired state Sen. Jack Taylor said.
Taylor said Wednesday he expects a lineup of speakers, including the state party chairman and potential gubernatorial hopefuls, to advocate a return to traditional party principles such as small government, low taxes and a trust in the free enterprise system.
"I think the main thing is going to be what the Republican Party stands for," Taylor said. "They've worked in the past, and we need to get back to those basic principles. : We believe that the people believe a free enterprise system can run things better than the government running everything."
Taylor said such principles stand in stark contrast to the current direction of the Obama administration and majority Democrats in Congress.
"We ought to be decreasing debt rather than increasing debt," Taylor said. "You can't spend your way out of a recession. : It's scaring people. : I think (the speakers) will be talking about the opportunity we have" as a party.
State Republican Party Chairman Dick Wadhams is the Lincoln Day Dinner's keynote speaker.
"I'm just going to talk about the importance of the 2010 election year, particularly for governor and senator," Wadhams said Wednesday. "We need to put forth strong candidates. : I think we've got to draw a very clear contrast with the record of the two incumbents."
Other special guests expected to attend and possibly speak briefly at the Routt County Republican Central Committee's annual fundraiser are state Sen. Al White, R-Hayden; state Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry, R-Grand Junction; state Rep. Randy Baumgardner, R-Hot Sulphur Springs; 14th Judicial District Attorney Elizabeth Oldham; Routt County Commissioner Nancy Stahoviak; Routt County Clerk and Recorder Kay Weinland; Routt County Treasurer Jeanne Whiddon; Routt County Coroner Rob Ryg and former Colorado Congressman Scott McInnis.
"I don't know what McInnis is going to say, but from what I understand, he's seriously considering running for governor," Taylor said.
Wadhams said Penry is another strong potential candidate for the governor's office.
White said he plans to provide attendees with an overview of the recently concluded state legislative session and explain major legislation that passed and what it will mean for Routt County.
The local Republican Party also has invited Congressman Mike Coffman, R-Aurora, the former Colorado secretary of state who was elected to national office in November, and state Attorney General John Suthers. The two have not confirmed whether they will attend.
"Unfortunately, we don't have a Republican congressman in this neck of the woods," Taylor said, "so we decided if (Coffman) could come, let's have him come and explain what's going on over there in Washington."
Friday's dinner will include a social hour with a cash bar, live and silent auctions, a special presentation by Simone Potter and dinner. Attendees are asked to take a potluck side dish; the party will provide meat and bread.