With the so-called “defection” of four Senators and a House member from Grover Norquist’s “Taxpayer Protection Pledge“, it’s nice to see someone standing against the grain, and keeping his pledge: Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe. In an interview with Newsmax TV, he said:
I have not [conceded]. I made it very clear that I was not conceding at all. So long as we look weak on that, then they’ve won the battle.
We have to understand that our problem is spending too much, not taxing too little. Most of the people understand that. All of the Republicans did understand that [at one time], so I’m a little disappointed in some of the actions of my fellow Republicans.
That’s directed at Senators Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Bob Corker and Saxby Chambliss who have bailed on their pledge and now want to put higher taxes “on the negotiating table” with Obama, thus giving away their major bargaining chip. But Inhofe isn’t alone in confirming that he won’t:
There may be others out there, so I came out of the chute saying I am not going to break from that. I made it in all sincerity…
He admits that Obama is a snake oil salesman, with a message that is especially persuasive to the rubes and the dependents:
Well, we’re not as persuasive as he is, but we have to be more persuasive. We have righteousness on our side. The vast majority of people would rather understand that what we’re saying is true. So we just have to be as persuasive as he is.
The problem with that is he has the bully pulpit. He can go out anytime he wants, and he has access to the vast majority of the media that doesn’t like conservatives.
It’s a problem, but we’ve got the right cause. We have the truth – and we should be able to sell our product better.
The interview with Newsmax revealed a whole lot more about Inhofe than just that he’s determined to keep his pledge. He also knows about the enemy:
If you look at the things that this president’s done to destroy America – you talk about the deficit; we talk about his war on fossil fuels keeping us from supplying our own energy; we talk about his disarming military of the United States – what they don’t know is the cost of the regulations.
These are regulations that he put off purposely until after the election, because people had realized what it’s going to cost them. I’m talking about the Ozone rule. That would place 650 counties… out of attainment in the United States.
The hydraulic fracturing [issue]: He thought he could get by with this thing and say “I’m all for fossil fuels, I’m for oil and gas, but we’ve got to do something with hydraulic fracturing.”
He remains optimistic:
What can we do about it? We can do all we can to explain the issues, to identify the issues to the American people. Once they hear about it, once they understand it, once they’re educated to it – then we can win. (my emphasis)
That’s the key point in the battle: education. The freedom fight will be won inside people’s heads. All of us need to do a better job at getting inside of them and help them begin to straighten out the mess that’s there.