Ever since the election, I have been looking for a voice from the conservative side to stand up and represent those of us who did not vote for President-elect Obama. It has been so frustrating, listening to all that the new Congress and new Administration want to do, without a reasonable, rational voice responding. We need leadership! We need rational leaders to stand up and speak for us! I am praying that more men and women like Governor Bobby Jindal will come forward. What he has to say is on target and in my mind, it must be the strategy of the conservative movement if we hope to lead this great nation again.
On the lessons of the last election cycle: "There are at least three lessons that immediately jump out at me. The first is that the party must consistently do what it says. You can't be the party of fiscal discipline and tolerate the kind of spending that our party has accepted in the last several years, especially in Washington. Our actions have to match our rhetoric. ... We can't be the party of fiscal discipline when we're tolerating and approving the kinds of spending we've seen at least the last eight years. Secondly, we've got to consistently oppose corruption in our own party. It's not enough to make excuses that 'the other side does it'. ...We've got to be a party of ideas. We can't be the party of "no." We've got to be a party that's unafraid of our conservative principles. I'm not one who looks at these election results and says we should abandon what we stand for. ...We have to apply our ideas to the problems Americans care about."
On President elect-Obama: "The president deserves our support as Americans. In church, we pray for our president, whether we voted for him or not. I think we should look for opportunities to work across party lines with him. I also think as Americans we also have an obligation to stand on principle when we disagree. We should genuinely want him to succeed. Our country is facing not only an economic challenge, but also international threats. I want him to succeed and I want our country to thrive under his administration. Clearly I will have philosophical disagreements with him and his administration. He deserves a chance to hit the ground running. He hasn't proposed his first bill. Republicans make a mistake in Congress if they simply go there and say their mission in life is to say, 'no' to every proposal. I think we should look for opportunities to work with him. I also think we should be proactive if we don't agree with him and offer (alternative) solutions. It's not to filibuster what we don't li ke and protest on the House floor; we need solutions."
On the Republican Party: "Too much focus on the messenger and not enough on the message. The Republican Party needs to do two things: One, we need to stop worrying about the Republican Party and start worrying about our country. Second, we need to stop worrying about the messenger and start worrying about substance. We will deserve to be a majority party again when we show the American people we are competent, we truly believe the principles we espouse and we've got relevant solutions to the things they care about, whether it's the economy, health care, international terrorism."
On social issues: "Two things. The country didn't stop being conservative; the Republican Party stopped being conservative. It's a mistake to say being conservative causes you to lose elections. We haven't tried that recently. We need to go back to our roots. American voters reward authenticity. They're not going to agree 100 percent with every candidate. What voters are looking for are candidates who are honest and tell them what they truly believe, stick to those beliefs. On the core conservative issues -- I don't think a majority of those who voted for Obama necessarily agreed with him on abortion or marriage. I don't believe the way to win elections is to abandon our beliefs. We've got to stand for something. I'm pro-life and fiscally conservative. You look at how Reagan got conservative Democrats. I'm sure there were people who voted for Reagan who didn't necessarily agree with everything he espoused, but they respected him for being principled and not having to read a poll to learn what he believed."
On faith: "I read Rick Warren's book "The Purpose Driven Life" right after I lost my first election in 2003 and one of the main lessons I got out of that was keeping the eternal perspective. If we truly believe what we read in the Bible and hear in our churches there are a lot of things we worry about in life that aren't that important from an eternal perspective. There are things more important than winning the next election. You realize you're not indispensable. The world can continue whether you are in or out of office, whether your party is in the majority or not. At the end of the day, we are not in control of everything. If you don't have that perspective, it can mean elected officials taking shortcuts to an end that justified the means. ...Second, viewing the sanctity of life, I believe the reason people are valuable is that they are created in the image of God and there's a dignity there. And that leads me to believe people should have access to health care, not because of policy reasons, but because they're valuable because we are created by God in His image."