The Grand Ol' Party: More Old, Less Party, Hardly Grand

Straight from GOP.com; 

  • It began in a little schoolhouse in Ripon, Wisconsin, in 1854. A small group of dedicated abolitionists gathered to fight the expansion of slavery, and they gave birth to a Party dedicated to freedom and equal opportunity.
  • The name “Republican” was chosen, alluding to Thomas Jefferson’s Democratic-Republican Party and conveying a commitment to the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
  • Low taxes, sound money, regulatory restraint: these were among the commonsense economic policies established by the GOP that brought about decades of prosperity after the Civil War. 
  • The Party’s core principles of freedom and equal opportunity are as relevant today as at our founding, and they are the roadmap for American renewal in a new and interconnected world.

What went wrong?  How can a party of life do so little for the health and well being of its citizenry?  How can a party of liberty so openly oppose gay marriage?  How can a party that believes God gave all humans the right to pursue their happiness do so little to help immigrants doing just that?  

President Reagan rightly criticized the Democratic vision for governing America saying; 

“Two visions of the future, two fundamentally different ways of governing – their government of pessimism, fear, and limits, or ours of hope, confidence, and growth.”

When we speak of health care we speak with pessimism and fear, not hope and confidence. 

When we speak of 'the family' we speak with fear and limits, not confidence and liberty. 

When we speak of immigration we speak with pessimism, fear and limits, not hope and growth.

Let's change the dialogue.  

When we speak of health care let us make clear it is not a right but it is the right thing to do - differently.  In a way that breeds competition and innovation and better results for healthier lives.

When we speak of marriage and family let us be clear the state's interest in the peoples domestic arrangements is limited to protecting individual rights and protecting the state.  Gay marriage is neither a threat to individual rights or the state.  Whether the union is blessed and holy is justly outside of state purview.

When we speak of immigration and amnesty let us ask forgiveness.  We left the door open.  We left food on the table.  We let those seeking shelter, find it.  That is right and moral and American.  To condemn the sheltered to a life in the shadows is a sin.  To speak now of deportation is sinful.  We created the problem by not being proactive to ask the immigrant to carry the burden of our mistake is wrong and un-American.

When we speak of America's role in the world, that is when we speak with hope and confidence - and we win on that issue. 

When we speak on simplifying the tax code, lowering taxes and reducing debt we speak with confidence and hope of growth - and we win on that issue. 

When we speak of limited government we speak with hope and confidence and liberty - and we win on that issue. 

We need to change the dialogue.  We are losing followers because we are no longer leading.