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December 6th, 2010

Newt Is Right – Rejecting Progressivism Is Not Enough

By Sam Clovis

Like him or not, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich is an idea man.  His American Solutions operation is generating practical, sound and timely ideas about how to deal with all the problems with which we are dealing.  High on his list of things to do is putting a stop to the out of control national government led by Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi.  Their progressive agenda is destroying the country in every manner imaginable.

Before everyone accuses me of jumping on the Newt bandwagon, I am still holding fire on the vast array of likely GOP candidates for president who are likely to turn Iowa into a media frequent flyer’s most frequent stop for the next 14 months or so.

The next GOP primary season will likely be a lot like the Triple Crown.  As many as 18 potential candidates will be in the running, like at the Kentucky Derby.  After Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, the field will shrink to perhaps a dozen or so, just like the Preakness.  After the first Super Tuesday, four or five will think they still have a chance like those who want to run the mile and a half at the Belmont.

It will work out something like that.  However, from now until the caucuses in early 2012, Iowa will be the place to be.  We will get a chance to learn a lot about these folks, and Newt is likely to be one of them.

I want to bring to your attention the contents of a speech given by Dr. Gingrich on November 11 in Dallas to the Reclaiming Liberty event.  Newt outlines a strong case for the notion that Americans have rejected and will continue to reject progressivism, at least the version offered by Obama-Reid-Pelosi.

As Mitch McConnell has stated, the mid-term elections were more a restraining order than a mandate.  The former Speaker thinks the mid-terms, historic in dimension and reach, were an outright rejection of socialism in its current form.  However, rejecting progressivism is not enough.  Americans need to follow through now and replace progressivism with sound conservative governance.  The only way to effectively do that is to contest progressives for every elected office in the nation.

Today, there are some 513 thousand elected officials at the national, state and local level.  This past November, Iowans did a good job of putting Republicans—and conservatives–in the Iowa Governor’s mansion and the Iowa legislature.  As good as that might be, this evolution is a single event—and much more is needed.  Let me paint a scenario (places and names have been changed to protect the innocent) about how important what Newt is suggesting might be.

Imagine a city in Iowa of moderate size where the school board represents a critical elected body that has tremendous impact on the community.  Let’s say the school administration and the teacher union are extremely cooperative and chummy.  After all, the superintendent was a teacher and union member before becoming a superintendent.  The board, elected officials supposedly representing the interests of constituents in the school district, is comprised of five good citizens doing their civic duty.

Recent actions on the part of the administration showed little thought in how they should spend one-time money and their proposals for financing pay raises and maintenance operations are, to say the least, less than transparent.  What should the board do?  One would think that the board would provide the laser beam focus on spending that seems to be needed right now.  Instead, a single voice has been advancing principles of good governance by forcing the administration to fully disclose its intentions.

The board will probably eventually cave to the administration, but this single fiscal conservative has forced the board to conduct due diligence.  How much better would the board and district function if that lone individual had some help?

Recruiting and supporting conservative candidates for every single office is an important tactic in eradicating progressive agendas in our schools, our county courthouses and on special district boards throughout the state.  It appears we still have a lot of work to do.

Newt has a lot of ideas, but this time, I think he has outlined a strategy that will fundamentally change America and bring us back to the intentions of the Founders.  We ought to get on board with Newt’s approach for making progressives an endangered species.  We will wait for Newt to convince us he is the best person to be president.

Photo by Dave Davidson

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About the Author

Sam Clovis

Sam Clovis is college professor, retired Air Force fighter pilot and former radio talk show host. He has been active in republican politics in Iowa for quite some time and is a highly visible and outspoken conservative. He has run for office in Iowa and remains a popular conservative figure.

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