House Republicans are readying for midterm elections in November. Media buys in the intervening months will only be as effective as the messages they permit politicians to transmit to voters. For this reason, and in hopes of achieving cohesion in the party's communications, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) will officially unveil a four-piece "Commitment to America" on September 19 in Pittsburgh.
This package of commitments will indicate to voters not only what the GOP intends to combat in the way of Democrat policies, pernicious trends, and perceived corruption, but what it intends to deliver instead to the electorate. The latter is regarded by some as more important — communicating a positive message along with solutions rather than negative messaging.
Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.) told Axios: "If you're just running on anti-Biden, well, that's not going to get you over the finish line."
When responding to President Joe Biden's claim that the Republican philosophy is "semi-fascist," McCarthy hinted at the party's forward-looking thematics: "Our best days are ahead of us, not behind us. Our nation can flourish again, and under a new historic Republic majority, it will."
Axios reported that McCarthy's latest iteration of the House Republicans' "Commitment to America" is the product of the work of seven issue-specific task forces assigned to identify and develop policy solutions to the problems confronting the American people.
The issues tackled by the task forces were: jobs and the economy; big tech censorship and data; the future of American freedoms; energy, climate, and conservation; American security; a healthy future; and China accountability.
A communications kit disseminated by McCarthy last month hinted at the contents of the September 19 release as well as the task forces' determinations. The kit divided Republicans' commitment to America into four documents, detailed below.
"An economy that is strong"
The first document attributed an estimated 550% increase in inflation to Democrat spending and noted the impact of a 12% spike in food prices. It also emphasized American energy dependence, the high price of gasoline, and U.S. reliance on a hostile supply of critical goods (i.e. particularly on communist China).
The proposed remedies:
- eliminate wasteful government spending;
- reduce the cost of living and boost business with "pro-growth tax policies";
- reconnect workers with jobs while also disincentivizing remote work;
- end Biden's "anti-energy policies" and increase the production of American-made energy;
- onshore supply lines and manufacturing; and
- strengthen and modernize the U.S. stockpile of supplies and medicines.
"A nation that is safe"
The second document pointed to the fallout of the Biden administration's border policies, including the crime and drug deaths resulting from unchecked illegal immigration. It also noted the connections between "Defund the Police" initiatives and skyrocketing murders and between failed border policies and the unprecedented number of opioid overdoses.
The southern border and Democrat deference to criminals were not the only focuses, however; foreign policy concerns were also raised. The document stressed the geopolitical threat of communist China amid waning confidence in the U.S. military, particularly after Biden's disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan.
The proposed remedies:
- require proof of legal status when applying for a job;
- restrict welfare benefits that incentivize illegal immigration;
- end catch-and-release at the southern border;
- finish building the border wall while also fully funding Border Patrol;
- make violent crime against police officers a federal offense;
- fully fund hiring bonuses to recruit more cops;
- deny funding to "woke district attorneys" and prosecutors who refuse to prosecute crimes;
- invest in the lethality of the U.S. military;
- hold the Biden administration responsible for the botched Afghanistan withdrawal;
- stand with Israel against Iran and terrorism; and
- counter communist Chinese aggression.
"A future that is free"
The third document homed in on three fronts: education, health care, and free speech. On the first front, it underlined a dearth (28%) of confidence in public schools, the Department of Justice's efforts to target parents, and the pandemic's deleterious impact on children's academics. For health care, the document noted Americans' decreasing life expectancy and the possible negative impact of an increasingly socialized approach to medicine. Finally, the document touched both on the addictive and censorious nature of social media.
The proposed remedies:
- take action to protect parental rights and expand school choice;
- ensure that transsexuals do not ruin girls' school sports;
- invest in lifesaving cures;
- modernize personal health care and expand access to telemedicine;
- scrap Section 230 protections for big tech companies;
- provide greater data security protections for citizens; and
- counter the cartelization of and collusion between big tech organizations.
"A government that is accountable"
The final document in the communication kit suggests the Democrats have: been opaque in their dealings; worked to silence their critics; applied the law unevenly; and run roughshod over the liberties of conservatives.
The proposed remedies:
- promote government transparency and accountability;
- uphold free speech and religious liberty;
- defend the unborn and protect pro-lifers targeted by bad actors;
- safeguard the Second Amendment; and
- ensure safe and free elections.
House Republicans previously issued a "Commitment to America" in 2020. The 2020 commitment was more geared toward helping then-President Trump continue to execute his mandate and to helping America gain its footing after the pandemic, hence the language of "restore," "rebuild," and "renew."
Since Afghanistan had not yet been withdrawn from in a botched manner and nearly 2 million illegals had not yet stolen into the country, geostrategy and the border were not top priorities as they are now. Policing was, however a concern, considering that year the "Defund the Police" rhetoric had kicked off, along with the BLM riots.
In March, former Republican Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich likened McCarthy's recent efforts and his forthcoming "Commitment to America" to past Republican efforts, particularly former President Ronald Regan's successful work in 1980 and the GOP's game-changing 1994 Contract.
Gingrich suggested that the House Republicans, by following up on these commitments, will "replace Pelosi's despotic perversion of the House of Representatives and turn it once again into the 'people's House.'"