One of my political heroes, up there with Madison, Coolidge, and Reagan is a man named Jack Kemp. Former New York congressman and 1996 VP nominee was the real advocate of “Big Tent” after Reagan. Sure, Reagan came up with the idea, but Kemp actually did something about it. He was the first republican to attempt to broaden the appeal to minorities, women, and young voters. His bleeding heart conservatism was the precursor to compassionate conservatism. He supported a safety net that helped put people on the latter toward upward mobility, rather than the stagnant net trap the democrats often advocate. He broadened the party’s appeal to blue collar workers and minorities. He is truly a model for today’s republican party.
We should look to find the next Jack Kemp as vigorously as we look for the next Ronald Reagan. Is it Rick Santorum? Paul Ryan? Marco Rubio? Someone else entirely? I don’t know, but I firmly believe that in order to save the Republican Party we need another Jack Kemp.
“I think I’ve advanced my views with compassion and tolerance.” -Jack Kemp