Somehow, Congressman Mike Pence was relegated to 8:30 Saturday morning at CPAC. What a cryin’ shame. His address was a rousing call to action. He argued that not only is the Republican movement off course, but that wrong heading is accepted. The party in D.C. accepts more government as the accepted philosophy of government. “We control the spending and the process and we wonder how things got to such a state.” Pence has posted his prepared remarks on his campaign website. Read it all. It’s vastly different from the tunnel vision offered by so many of the party leaders these days, especially those in Washington.
Speaking of Washington, at a bloggers’ reception hosted by Human Events after his address, a man from Washington State asked how he can get Rep. Pence to visit and rally the troops there. He answered that he just needed to be invited, but offered a few thoughts on the two Washingtons: “You’re the Washington that I like. You’re sitting in 30 square miles surrounded by a place called reality. That‘s a Washington where they produce things.” Indeed.
This is a man who has fun discussing political philosophy at 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning. He’s a man of ideas. He’s friendly, genuine, humble, has gravitas, and loves his wife, Karen. When he entered the room, he made sure he located her and had her seated at his side before he began. This is a man who is still calling for the abolition of the Department of Education (remember that, Republicans?) and said that if U.N. reform fails, the U.S. “should seriously consider the formation of a new world body of free peoples.” He’s rightly suspicious of the establishment, joking that his daughter wasn’t impressed by his award of Human Events Man of the Year. “If Dad’s ever Time magazine Man of the Year, it’s time to lock him up.”
Even though Pence is a rising star among the conservative movement and, to a lesser extent, within the party, he’s still underestimated. He’s got the right stuff, and he’s speaking at 8:30 Saturday morning.