Last night, I spoke at the Polk County (FL) Republican Executive Committee meeting. The focus of the talk was the importance of being principled and having the character necessary to carry out those principles. My approach was basically an overview of how Republicans have fared in those two areas over the past century. There were highs and lows in that historical survey.
The conclusion was that three things are needed right now if the Republicans ever hope to direct the nation again. They are:
- Principled leadership on fidelity to the Constitution and to the policies that must be followed to be faithful to that Constitution.
- The ability to communicate the message so people will understand the importance of these principles.
- A commitment to personal character—the walk MUST match the talk. We can’t simply speak the message; we must BE the message.
If Republicans do these three things, they will once again inspire confidence in the electorate and be entrusted with the responsibility of governing.
I closed with a quote from Ronald Reagan when he spoke in Orlando in 1983 before the National Association of Evangelicals, the talk some have dubbed “The Evil Empire Speech.”
I’ve always maintained that the struggle now going on for the world will never be decided by bombs or rockets, by armies of military might. The real crisis we face today is a spiritual one; at root, it is a test of moral will and faith.
What was true in 1983 remains true today. Are we up to the challenge? Will we, as a nation, pass this test?