Define your positions.
Make your positions clear, and make them known. You cannot just ride the anti-Obamacare train to victory. Candidates need to define what they would do in Washington.
One candidate (my favorite this cycle) is doing just that. In Iowa, Joni Ernst is fighting for what she believes in. Maybe you'll remember her better from this viral campaign ad.
In an extremely tight race in a tough state for Republicans, Joni Ernst is messaging correctly to the people. She's also not afraid to tackle issues conservatives usually shy away from, such as sexual assault in the military. Take notes Republicans; this is how you run a campaign.
Stay away from divisive terms.
America has had enough division. Americans want someone who is going to unite them. Obama was partially correct when he told Republicans to "stop hating all the time." Thanks for the campaign strategy there.
You should define your positions to people without using the words "conservative" and "liberal." Don't take an us-versus-them tone. The problem Republicans face is an imaging problem, not a position problem. Talk about issues, not about people and parties.
The reaction to your campaign ad should go something like the following:
Another campaign ad? Yeah, I agree with that. I agree with that too. That seems like common sense. Wait a minute. (S)he's a Republican? I might have to give more though to him/her.
Define your issues. Say what you believe. Focus on issues, not people and parties. Then at the end of the ad, slap them with your party.
Channel your inner Milton Friedman.
Economic. Economics. Economics. People are worried about the economy. People want secure jobs. If there is one topic that we as a party should be able to absolutely destroy the Democrats on, it's economics.
However, our problem is rhetorically. When Republicans open their mouths to talk about economics, everyone watching takes a nap. You have to make it interesting. Stop rambling about numbers and make it personal. People want to know how it effects them without having to learn the ins-and-outs of economics. Start channeling your inner Milton Friedman. Get people engaged in what you are talking about.
Two Words: State's Rights.
This right here, Republicans, is your ticket to tackling social issues. When people ask you what your opinion on gay marriage is, I want you to say, "Gay marriage is not a federal issue. It is each state's individual right prescribed to them by the Tenth Amendment of the Constitution." The same goes for pot legalization and a whole slew of social issues. Let people in their own individual state decide what they want.
Also, remind them that people vote with their feet. Since we are such a diverse nation, it should be left to the people in that state. If people aren't happy with their own state, they have the ability to move to another. With 50 states out there, I'm sure they're bound to find one that suits them best.
Additionally, this becomes key with a position Republicans should take, channeling their inner Ronald Reagan. Give power back to the states like the founders intended. Individuals know better than government. Take this position when talking about Common Core and other federal regulations.
Key Terms to Use.
These are words, which I feel should define the Republican Party.
- Middle Class
- Tax Cuts
- Small Businesses
- Reduce the Debt
- Border Security
- Tough on Terrorism
Make It Personal.
You have to make it personal. FDR and Ronald Reagan were able to captivate the nation because people believed the Presidents were speaking directly to them. Make it personal. Connect with the average person.
If we follow these ideas, I believe we have reasons to believe we will take the Senate and then the White House. We have great candidates this election cycle; we just need them to put their greatest election bid forward.