The New Faces of the Republican Party
This has been an exciting Republican Convention, especially if you are a conservative movement person. It has been easy to be discouraged, to see government growing (in Vice-Presidential Paul Ryan's memorable words about government handouts that "everything will be free but us"), the debt rising, and our place in world leadership voluntarily surrendered. Woe is us. Our future only looks terrible. Get your gun, canned food and head for the hills. (Which, of course, in Indiana isn't a great option.)
The biggest difference is that we are finally seeing on the national level what has been gradually occurring. As we seen financial success spread to the minority communities, as we've welcomed more immigrants coming to America to succeed, and as opportunities increased as the bonds of slavery & the aftermath and discrimination in general disappear (though obviously not completely) what we have seen the steady rise of a group of new Republicans. The committed effort of President George W. Bush (Bush 43) to promote minorities inside his Administration gave experience to many of them.
Last night Condi Rice, now a former Secretary of State, gave the speech of her life. While she has some positions, on abortion, immigration and foreign policy that might keep her from being the Presidential nominee, she has established herself as our premier foreign policy spokesman. She connected the dots of showing how debt undermines our example and dream. How abandoning trade agreements has abandoned those areas to Chinese domination. How the lack of clarity, the hand-wringing lack of confidence by this Administration undermines freedom and even the willingness of oppressed people around the world. What a powerful speech. Those of us who are older would say: the new Jeanne Kilpatrick but far more. She's beautiful, incredibly smart, and delivered the speech without a teleprompter. Wow.
Right after her was a totally different type of female, the first Hispanic female Governor in American history. A Republican, not a Democrat. She bubbled over with energy, explaining what it was like to discover that what she believed made her a Republican not a Democrat. And she, like Republican Governor after Republican Governor, showed how she took a state covered in debt, cut spending, didn't raise taxes but now has a balanced budget.
And Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina, perhaps the most impressive of all, from the night before. And Utah's Mia Love - yes, an African-American Republican from Utah - was the most impressive congressional candidate (dare, I say this, more impressive than all the congressmen and senators at this convention so far).
Add Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, who couldn't appear because he stayed in New Orleans to be ready to handle the storm Issac but is one of the smartest people in America; Governor Sandoval of Nevada, who gave up a life-time appointment as federal judge to take the risk to run for governor; Texas Senate and Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who will speak tonight, this is a different party. Wow.