Mike Pence: An endorsement Posted by: McQ
on Wednesday, November 15, 2006
I've been trying to put my thoughts together on the 4 conference calls I sat through yesterday. I've already endorsed John Shadegg as whip (and he further impressed me that was the right decision on yesterday's call). Yesterday I got to hear from a candidate for House Minority Leader - Mike Pence.
Although not quite as private a session as those that followed (it was a venue shared with an audience of journalists at the Heritage Foundation) we were able to ask some questions.
First I liked the way Pence defined his job. He felt it was to "lead a team of leaders" in challenging big government Democrats and their programs not only on the floor and inside the beltway, but successfully on the airwaves. Key. Critial.
He also made another very important point. He saw his job and the job of incoming Republican leadership to stand by the President when he was right but to also oppose him when he goes off the path of fiscal responsibility and limited government. Resonated well with me as you might imagine.
Pence articulated what became a common theme that day among the candidates - Republicans had lost their way, had pursued power as and end and had seen that cause an erosion in the public's confidence. He said it was time to get back to their core principles of limited government, fiscal discipline and reform. To quote him, government should be "smaller after [Republicans] got there than before they got there."
He also was behind the effort to stop earmarks, etc. But mostly I liked his desire to vigorously challenge the majority party as they attempt to enact their legislative agenda. And not just that he plans on challenging them, but he plans on challenging them with well thought out alternatives which are based in the core principles he outlined. Again, both key and critical to success.
John Boehner is also running for this position. I was on a conference call with him last year when he was running for Majority leader. As he was then, he's a good second choice. But he's not, at least in my opinion, the guy they need in charge now. It is time for new faces and new ideas as well as a leadership which will challenge both the Democrats and the President as necessary. I think Mike Pence is that person.