It’s a tactic with a proven track record—back in 1994 soon-to-be Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich fashioned a "Contract with America" that promised to push a conservative agenda if Republicans were elected back into the majority in Congress. It worked and gave the GOP control over Congress for the next 12 years, until a wave of anger against then President George W. Bush helped to oust Republicans in 2006. Four years later the GOP clearly senses blood in the water on the verge of midterm elections that could result in a route of staggering Democrats, and to help push the final sales pitch Republicans have once again presented a set of policy promises to American voters. This time around the "Pledge to America" pledges to, among other things, roll back federal spending to 2008 levels, replace President Obama’s health care reform bill with their own scaled down version, give small businesses a big tax deduction and direct more funding toward a missile defense system. Will the articulation of a conservative agenda for America be enough to push Republicans back over the top in Congress?
Kitty Felde, KPCC’s Washington correspondent; covered the Republican House leaders’ unveiling of their Pledge to America this morning at a hardware store in Sterling, Virginia, near the U.S. capital.
Ryan Hecker, organizer of the Tea Party's "Contract From America" and founding member of the Houston Tea Party Society
Rick Tyler, spokesman for Newt Gingrich and Founding Director of Renewing American Leadership (ReAL)
Rep. Tom McClintock, R-California’s 4th District