Reagan, Gingrich, the Tea Party and 2010

Posted: August 4, 2010 in Uncategorized

I am a former political hack. 

In 1992 (five years before I met Christ), I read P.J. O’Rourke’s hilarious but insightful book Parliament of Whores, which influenced me to move from political apathy to libertarianism.  I then met a conservative Congressman who was a friend of the family, and became his intern.  So, I cut my hair, took out my earring, “moth-balled” my Metallica tees and put on a suit.  I worked the 1992 congressional campaign and fell in love with electoral politics.  After all, I had just left Hollywood behind after a 2-year stint and found that politics is really just Hollywood for ugly people anyway!

After the ’92 campaign, I studied politics with religious fervor.  I ran local campaigns, attended campaign schools, served as a state officer in a Republican group, etc, etc.  I developed very good political instincts and predicted the GOP take over of the House and Senate long before many pundits.  I even used to belong to a betting pool re: congressional campaigns and for years I predicted all 435 house races and 30 odd senate races with about a 98% rate of accuracy.  

In ’94, I served as political director for a successful congressional campaign and then spent 2-years on Capitol Hill as a legislative aide.  After a cancer diagnosis that brought me to the Lord and then to ministry, I left electoral politics behind but I remain a political (and a historical) junkie.

2010 marks the best year the GOP has had since 1994 when Newt Gingrich led the conservative tsunami that swept the Democrats out of power and 1980 when Ronald Reagan came to office but there is an important difference between now and then–both Reagan and Gingrich outlined an overwhelmingly positive agenda whereas the current Republican leadership has been eerily silent apparently happy just to be the “other guys.” 

Thanks to the vacuum created by the quiet GOP leadership, the Tea Party has arisen.  Now, I’m a pro-life, pro-marriage libertarian, so I’m not anti-Tea Party but I am disturbed by the overwhelmingly negative rhetoric of the group.  Fist pumping anger historically will grant a movement only temporary success while it takes true vision to maintain a movement. 

I pray that my fellow Christian conservatives will be salt & light within these movements and refuse to demonize the Democratic leadership in Washington (who we need to pray for daily) and learn from leaders like the late President Reagan and former Speaker Gingrich, whose Contract with America was a turning point in ’94.

Take a long look and listen below to see what I’m talking about–

May God bless us all.

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