Last night I wasn’t very interested in Obama’s speech, because I, like most of the country, knew what was coming. What I was interested in was Governor Bobby Jindal.
Jindal, as most consevatives know, is the next rising star. He’s been cleaning up Louisiana since he came into office, and as a very young man at 37 (ten years younger than Obama), many are putting the Presidential bid on his back, whether he likes it or not. We know him to be an incredibly educated, effective, and, from what we know, idealistic man (ideals is NOT a bad word for conservatives).
Jindal walked up, a little awkward at first, after all, it’s his first national appearance. But there is something very important in Jindal: he represents a new face in the Republican party…and most important, a new guard, an outside of the Beltway guy. Michael Steele, head of the Republican party, was not just messing with us when he said he was going to shake things up and rebuild the party.
Bobby Jindal, speaking for the Republicans, presented this step in the right direction. He introduced himself, but in effect, though the pundits missed this (and I did initially too) he was saying, “Hi, I am the new face of the Republican Party.” Bingo.
While we might not have had the huge applause and that grin of Pelosi along with Super Macho Man Joe Biden, behind us, we did have something else: a beginning. And like all great beginnings, they often begin, well, a little shaky. We did not have a manufactured image step to the camera last night (like Obama is), and have everyone clapping around him as if there is no opposition to the man. Instead we had a new guy, a young, but experienced (far more than Obama) and brilliant guy, a guy with the right values. He said something very important. He said, “Hi, I am Bobby Jindal, a conservative Republican, and I warn you not to underestimate my powers.” (see my article on Blowing Up the Deathstar for more). That’s what we need right now more than anything.
This new “hope,” a real hope, is like any new movement…it has to learn to crawl before it can stand. And the Republican party is currently still in labor. But we are on the right track. Picking a man representative of the base, and not one of the three dem-, I mean, moderates Crist, Swartzeneggar, Specter, or Graham, was exactly what the Republican party needed. (Let those three nail in the coffins stay on the shelf, we’re not quite dead yet).
In effect, we’re beginning to regroup and resist. We’ve got the talent out there, we just have to polish it and let it shine. One of the most important things is to focus on letting people know that we are in the business of helping people not handouts. I think if we combine this with a strong delivery and our base belief in limited government, we’ll be onto something.
Last night was the beginning. While we all sit here still screaming in labor pangs, let’s remember, if we continue with this great message, there is glory ahead.