03 January 2008

Newt Gingrich’s “Platform of the American People”

I have to admit that if Newt Gingrich did not have to carry his history around with him, I would be very happy for him to run for president…and win. But that seems to be too much to ask of him, and the country, so Mr. Gingrich has instead turned to what he does best as a career – come up with good, practical ideas. I was convinced of his practical genius again yesterday when I read his proposal, “The Platform of the American People.” (.pdf file)

The platform is a worthy read for anyone, Democrat, Republican or other, who feels that the federal government simply is not working. With Congressional disapproval ratings between 60 and 70 per cent and President Bush’s disapproval ratings between 57 and 65 per cent, surely the electorate is ready for a distinct change in standard operating procedure in Washington. Mr. Gingrich offers a vision, a plan, of how to go about that change.

The platform, based on polls (link here), would allow Democrat and Republican legislatures to start the 2009 legislative session on common ground. American Solutions polling indicates high levels of consensus in the electorate on issues concerning religion, use of English, immigration and assimilation, innovation, energy and the environment, taxes and social security, and defending America. These are certainly not small issues, and the only specific which polled lower than 60 per cent concerns privatization of Social Security (59%).

What’s more refreshing, his plan is not just sound-byte, looks-good-on-TV statements. The specifics could, for the most part, be reflected in simple, straight-forward legislation. The platform, if followed through with, could help restore American’s faith in government. And while no plan is perfect, Mr. Gingrich’s plan at least appears to be based on sound data and consideration, does not demonize one side or another, and would tangibly demonstrate unity and bipartisanship.

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