By: Brian Sikma
On Tuesday night we saw what happens when Republicans stray from the principles of our nation’s founding and attempt to imitate the big government plans of liberalism on a more limited scale. We cannot expect to win elections if we govern without our principles. We cannot expect to regain the majority if we refuse to acknowledge where we went wrong and where we must change. Only when we begin to offer coherent, bold and vibrant solutions to the American people will they then trust us with the honor and responsibility of governing. We didn’t lose in 2006 and 2008 because we weren’t conservative enough; we lost because we weren’t principled enough and we did not clearly convey an alternate-and brighter-vision for what this country can be.
Having had the tremendous opportunity to serve as a Communications Director on a Republican Congressional campaign during this election cycle allowed me to see what is going wrong in House Republican leadership. While our campaign and many individual Republican Congressional campaigns around the country worked hard to convey a serious and positive message with specific details for how we were going to fight for the people in Washington, the same cannot be said of many of those in House Republican leadership. There was very little, if any, substantive and bold leadership coming from those who were supposed to be the leaders of our party in the U.S. House of Representatives. It is time for new leadership in the House Republican Conference.
While current leadership was often found wanting, there were some individual members of Congress who worked hard to build and convey a solid message. One of those individuals was Indiana Congressman Mike Pence. Over the critical summer and fall months of the ’08 campaign cycle, Congressman Pence worked with fellow House Republicans to build up the conservative alternative to the socialist-leaning policies being trumpeted elsewhere in our party. He took time to campaign on behalf of conservative Congressional candidates in order to build a team that will get things done in the House. He didn’t wait for a leadership title, he started leading when others didn’t.
With the election over the parties now turn to figuring out who will serve in various leadership positions during the 111th Congress. Congressman Pence has entered the race for the key position of House Republican Conference Chairman. If House Republicans are to succeed in 2010, they must have individuals like Mike Pence in leadership. I would strongly urge you to contact every Republican member of Congress that you have worked for, voted for, or contributed to and urge them to support Mike Pence in his bid for Conference Chairman. We need a strong conservative who understands campaigning and governance in House leadership.
Now is not the time for us to quietly walk away from the battle. The dream of a stronger, safer, and better America is still there and it’s time for us to revive that dream. The liberal policies that will be promoted over the next 2 years under an Obama presidency and a Democrat controlled House and Senate must be optimistically and firmly opposed by the advocates of ordered freedom. Yes, we’ve been beat up, but I’m not about to quit and I hope you aren’t either!