Thursday afternoon, I had the privilege of interviewing House GOP Policy Committee Chairman Thad McCotter on a variety of subjects.

We started with the health care debate going on. I started by saying that, from an outsider’s perspective, it looked like Senate Democrats were like a dog chasing its tail. Chairman McCotter said that he wasn’t into predicting legislative outcomes, especially in the Senate. He said, though, that he took particular note of Howard Dean criticizing the bill from a left-of-center perspective. Chairman McCotter then said that the AFL-CIO and the SEIU not showing up for the Democrats’ pass health care rally was especially noteworthy.

Sticking with health care, I said that I’ve ended a number of health care posts this way:

Only in Washington, DC, could they pass a bill that increases the deficit, raises taxes and still leaves 25,000,000 people uninsured and still call it reform.

The laughter from the other end of the phone told me that Chairman McCotter appreciated the sarcasm.

I then asked whether signing a health care bill into law might start the next round of layoffs. I said that I was basing that on businessmen and women talking about not hiring because of uncertain labor costs. Chairman McCotter said that he’s warned Republicans that just knowing what the labor costs are isn’t enough. He said that knowing that you’re being taxed too much won’t help job creation.

Chairman McCotter said that it’s important that we bring certainty to the labor costs but that we also make labor costs affordable enough so that businesses have an incentive to start hiring and growing their companies again. According to Chairman McCotter, that isn’t possible without controlling spending and reducing government’s intrusion into our lives.

The next subject that we talked about was the day-to-day work that the House GOP Conference was doing in voting against irresponsible spending. Chairman McCotter said that that’s a daily fight that they must get right each time so that “the sovereign American people” will trust Republicans to govern again.

I pointed out that they were doing a very good job with that in the House and, most importantly, that they were doing an outstanding job listening to the American people. Chairman McCotter said that “listening to our bosses, the sovereign American people, is a priority.” I noted that people were upset with the Democrats for not listening to them on health care. I said that the Democrats’ ignoring the American people was fueling a fire that won’t be extinguished anytime soon.

Again, Chairman McCotter said that it’s their job to be responsive to the people and to walk the walk, that that’s the only way that the American people would start trusting them again.

Chairman McCotter said that the House Republican Policy Committee has worked diligently to put together the principles that Republicans would govern by. He told me to check out their website, which I plan on doing this afternoon. He said that everyone should “order a free copy of the Policy Committee’s pamphlet We the People: WIDE AWAKE.” I’ve already ordered my copy. I’d suggest that you follow this link to order your copy today, too.

Here’s a brief excerpt from Wide Awake:

We Are Wide Awake
They were “Wide Awakes” – Americans marching through sleepy hamlets for candidate Abraham Lincoln and the cause of human freedom. They were “Republicans!”

Today, Republicans continue to embrace our enduring duty to:

1. Expand human liberty and self-government;

2. Conserve our cherished way of life and its foundations of faith, family, community and country;

3. Empower Americans to achieve constructive, necessary change; and

4. Defend America’s national security.

And we act upon five permanent principles:

1. Our liberty is from God not the government;

2. Our sovereignty is in our souls not the soil;

3. Our security is from strength not surrender;

4. Our prosperity is from the private sector not the public sector; and

5. Our truths are self-evident not relative.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Those are the underlying principles that guide the House GOP’s policy proposals. Frankly, they’re the type of principles that inspire me to work hard to elect more men and women to the House and Senate. These principles are the type of principles that should guide the next generation of conservatives.

In September, 2007, I wrote a post titled “Without a Vision, the People Perish.” Thanks to Chairman McCotter’s leadership, conservatives have a new vision to aspire to and uphold.

Another topic that we discussed was the role out-of-control spending is playing in hurting the economy. Chairman McCotter said that people and small businesses know that tax increases are inevitable once they see spending rising at the level that it’s increased already this year.

I asked whether the Bush tax cuts expiring next year was having a negative effect on the economy. Chairman McCotter said that the Bush tax cuts expiring, Cap And Trade, Stimulus II and health care, combined, were dragging the economy down. He said that, as a rule, the private sector needs to know that government spending is under control.

He then said that it’s important to start from the right premise, which is that the private sector is the only path back to a healthy economy and sustained prosperity. Chairman McCotter mentioned several times that government’s job is to get spending controlled so that the private sector could start putting their innovation to work in reviving the economy.

I mentioned that the Democratic leadership, as it’s currently configured, would never admit their errors and change directions. I said that’s why the 2010 elections were important to changing policy. (Again, the conversation didn’t stray into campaign strategy. This was just something mentioned in passing as part of the solution for our policy woes.)

The other thing that I found refreshing was Chairman McCotter’s enthusiastic support for the TEA Party movement. In fact, to the House GOP leadership’s credit, they’re all enthusiastic supporters of the TEA Party movement.

The interview confirmed my hunch that Rep. McCotter is one of the GOP’s rising stars. I’ve heard numerous times that Paul Ryan is “the smartest guy in the room on policy.” Having interviewed him, I can attest to the fact that he’s an exceptional talent policywise. After Thursday’s interview, though, I think that there isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between Mssrs. Ryan and McCotter. Together with Conference Chairman Pence, the House GOP has an impressive trio at the top of the leadership chain.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

8 Responses to “Rep. McCotter Lays Out An Appealing Vision”

  • eric z. says:

    Work as cheap as the Chinese is the GOP message to the US workforce?

  • Gary Gross says:

    Where did you come up with that? We’d rather see small businesses create jobs because they’ve discovered the next big thing. Cutting taxes gives entrepreneurs an incentive to start innovating. Innovation will drive wages higher.

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