I Lost on Jeopardy
Monday, April 24, 2006 :::
Or something like that is one of the topics of Newt Gingrich's new, weekly e-newsletter, "Winning the Future."
A modest title, from a modest man.
But seriously, here's what the former Speaker has to say about the drift in the congressional GOP:
In the late 1970s, the leader of the Republican minority in the U.S. House of Representatives used to greet newly elected Republican members with a white flag of surrender. "Every day I wake up and look in the mirror and say to myself, 'Today you're going to be a loser,'" said the former minority leader. "And after you're here awhile, you'll start to feel the same way. But don't let it bother you. You'll get used to it."
A party whose leader would offer such advice deserves to be in the minority -- and we were, for 40 years. But in 1994 we changed that with a bold ideas-based, values-led grassroots movement. We believed in transformational leadership: accountability in government, balanced budgets, lower taxes, stronger defense and reforming the welfare state. And we believed this: To bring about this transformation, we had to reject the minority leader's advice. We would not "get used" to losing. We would win. And win we did.
But today, 12 years later, conservatives are grasping for a reinvigorated movement that will return our party to its roots of smaller government, innovative ideas and common sense solutions. The situation is serious. We are in jeopardy of losing the majority we won in 1994. Now is the time to act.
And that's it.
"Now is the time to act."
No mention of where to act, how to act, nor even what script to read from.
Not exactly the sort of direction one would expect from a man who thrives on ideas -- often letting them spill forth before they've been fully formed. Perhaps those ideas will come in next week's installment of "Winning the Future" (cue the orchestra).
As a side note, I have to wonder why Gingrich takes such a hard swipe at John Rhodes -- the Republican Minority Leader in the late 1970s.
::: posted by Norman Leahy at 4/24/2006