In a wide-ranging radio interview last week, Colorado GOP Chair Steve House had some newsworthy (and praiseworthy) advice for Colorado Republicans who seek to actually win elections:
- Don’t just hate Obamacare but focus on solutions.
- Don’t talk so much about gun rights and the 2nd Amendment.
- Talk about education more–but no so much about charder schools.
House’s advice came during a discussion with KFKA 1310 AM’s Stacy Petty show about how Colorado Republicans have “got to start thinking a little bit differently on how we talk to people, especially the 490,000 or so unaffiliated or ‘leans right’ voters that we have got to make sure vote Republican, on top of our base in this coming election.”
First, “stop talking at every one of our discussions about the 2nd Amendment,” said House, adding that “we own that issue” and Democrats want Republicans fixating on it.
“You know, no matter what happens in the world, we’re not going to give up on our 2nd Amendment,” said House on air. ” We have defenders in RMGO and NRA and our sheriffs and other people.”
“So, what should we be talking about?” asked House, before answering his own question. “And I suggested we should be talking about education, because I think it’s the number one issue for us as a state, for us as a Party.”
To do this, House suggests that Republican discussions go “beyond charter schools” in addressing education issues and put more emphasis on graduation rates and third-grade reading levels, which he cites as a reliable predictor of future individual success, a bedrock GOP value.
Similarly, House told Petty he’d like to see Republicans explain how to have the “right processes, regulatory structure, and incentives in place to see us solve some [health] problems.”
House says, for Republicans, “it’s not about hating Obamacare.”
This actually leaves the door open to improving it! How great would that be.
So at a time when the trending news analysis is obsessed with the “outsiders,” you can make a case that the real “outsider” thinking, at least among the die-hard Republican base voters, is reflected in a guy like House.
Or his predecessor Ryan Call, who calls out the “arrogance” of Donald Trump and Ted Cruz and argues that Republicans need “to grow the coalition, even if people don’t agree with us 100 percent of the time.”
Those are the kinds of Republican messages that need to be elevated by reporters, in this dark moment of extremism and carpet-bombing outsiderism, to give Republicans themselves a wider window of the possibilities for escape and redemption.