Elephants in the Room

Frank Gregorsky

Republicans 50 and up watched President Ronald Reagan and Speaker Newt Gingrich deliver national leadership. Today, Republicans of all ages watch “their” House and Senate and see nothing of the kind… A Republican-run legislative branch isn’t supposed to enable Iran Bailouts, rising deficits, the importation of saboteurs, the destruction of private health insurance, wars on entire industries, and IRS corruption. Congress’s defaults have been huge, they imperil the Constitution and national security, the solutions go way beyond personalities, and … they can start with Elephants in the Room. Reinforced by former GOP Congressmen, the seven authors of Elephants in the Room showcase effective campaign methods and fresh legislative strategies.

The book’s subtitle — “a History of the House Republican Future” — refers to historical examples (from both parties) that make plain the co-equal status of Congress in the setting of domestic policy. State-level GOP officials can use this book to train prospective candidates.

College Republicans can use it to put their left-wing professors on the spot. And incumbent House Members who never served with Newt Gingrich will see his methods with fresh eyes… “The Original Gingrich Playbook” (Chapter 5) brings back Gingrich’s exploits during the Reagan Era and encourages the restless and more junior Members of the House and Senate to work around — whenever they can’t outrightly oppose — their “Leadership.” And Chapter 13 calls on two great military leaders — Ulysses S. Grant and Carl von Clausewitz — to map the health-care blunders of House and Senate Republicans.

If you’ve never smiled while absorbing a paper on strategy, that’s one more upside from a book that doesn’t block out the real world. You’ll never see this kind of partisan primer from the RNC. All but one of the authors has extensive Washington experience. Their advice is both bold and seasoned. It usually reaches beyond ideology, in ways that help both moderate and “hard-line” perspectives be more effective. Elephants in the Room mixes inspiration with indignation, and its “war stories” point to tomorrow’s victories. So, come into the room … climb the ladder … make ready to hit the roof … while you gain new respect for the house.

Frank Gregorsky

Frank Gregorsky has lived in northern Virginia for most of the time since 1979. While working in Seattle as a Discovery program manager, Frank edited the book Speaking of George Gilder (Discovery Institute Press, 1998).