Simplifying Conservatism: Winning Elections in the Soundbite Era

It's become an issue for conservatives recently: How do we change our message to identify with voters?

Actually, the question shouldn't be how do we change our MESSAGE. The message isn't the problem. However, we need to change our MESSAGING.

(For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, that means don't change the platform, just change the description.)

Where conservatives are losing is not our message. The message of small government, personal responsibility, and freedom isn't the problem. The real problem is the way we PRESENT that message.

We can present all the charts and graphs and spew numbers until we're blue in the face, we won't win elections. Ronald Reagan didn't win two elections that way. Ronald Reagan won by presenting the conservative message in a way that average Americans could digest.

His message was simple: Are you better off than you were four years ago?

Yet today we're making it far bigger than it needs to be. The Democratic Party and liberals are good at it (even if they aren't telling the truth). Such examples are the fictional "war on women" and "the rich need to pay their fair share."

So what does our message need to be? How do we simplify conservatism to sound bites? Here are a few simple ways to talk about conservatism.

Dear Government: It's not your money!

If Americans have to live within their income, so does government.

Yes YOU can!

If you have $2 Trillion, you can't spend 3!

If you trust yourself more than the government, vote Republican.

What part of "The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed" was so confusing?

You can do it better without government "help!"

Freedom. Responsibility. Strength.

Compassionate results over compassionate intentions. 

Every single one of these single sentence statements are in line with the conservative thesis. All hold the same themes as the conservative pillars of personal responsibility, fiscal sanity, and small government. But each one is explained in a single sentence instead of a long chart filled with obscure data and obfuscated (but accurate) facts.

We can certainly explain our positions in greater detail when need be, which puts us in an advantage over Democrats. Our positions make logical and mathematical sense, which also puts us in advantage over Democrats. Simply put, if we can get our messaging down, we will win. Period.