Morton Kondracke spoke last week in Los Angeles at Occidental College at the first Kemp Scholar lecture, a new program created at the college from which Jack Kemp graduated. We have posted the thoughts of Mr. Kondracke previously, as he has become a bit of an expert on Jack Kemp in his writing a much overdue biography.
Last week’s Kondracke visit is reported here. The best part of the report comes when Kondracke got into specifics about Jack Kemp Conservatism, which he dubbed “Kempism”:
“Jack was the first and chief advocate for a new idea called supply-side economics,” Kondracke said. “He’s the one who sold Reagan on what became Reaganomics.” His new biography will argue that Reagan and Kemp, acting in concert on both domestic and international policy, won the Cold War. The book’s working title, he said, is Jack Kemp: the Quarterback Who Changed the World.
While Kemp was a principled conservative, “he also was an idealist, passionately dedicated to the well-being of all Americans, regardless of race or gender or income,” Kondracke said. “He thought that ideas could change the world, and he fought his battles on that level, even though that cost him during his political campaigns.”
Were he alive today, Kemp would not write off 47 percent of the electorate, as Mitt Romney did during last year’s presidential election, he said. Kemp opposed Proposition 187, the 1994 California initiative aimed at undocumented workers, and believed supply-side incentives could have a powerful positive effect on communities of color.
“As Newt Gingrich once said, Jack has showered with more African-Americans than most Republicans have ever met,” Kondracke said. “Jack honestly believed that the GOP could once again be the party of Lincoln, that if the economy provided jobs that extended into the ghetto, African-Americans would vote Republican.”
In the wake of Romney’s defeat, Kondracke added, “We have seen the beginnings of the emergence of ‘Kempism’” from such figures as Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin (who counted Kemp as a mentor), Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. “What the Republican Party needs is what Jack provided—a conservative message that would appeal to average, ordinary citizens.”
It’s clear that Jack Kemp Conservatism is the definitive remedy for what ails the Republican party today; a solid message that appeals to and benefits every American.
Stay tuned to our efforts, whether here on the blog, via Twitter or via our Jack Kemp project email newsletter. We have some very interesting things in the works and the best way to hear about them will be via one of those three methods. We have made recent additions to the GPH Consulting team and together there will be new things you have not seen from a political consulting firm before.