RNC Chairman Reince Priebus Remarks From 2014 RNC Summer Meeting
Remarks As Prepared For Delivery
Once again, welcome to Chicago. What better way to show we’re serious about being present everywhere than to come to the president’s hometown!
Of course, long before Illinois was the home of President Obama, it was the home of our first Republican president. And we’re proud to be here today in the Land of Lincoln.
This meeting is the last time we’re all together before November. After today, we head back to our home states and work non-stop to get our candidates elected.
We have successful governors running for re-election. We have future governors who will bring new leadership to states where Democrats have failed.
Like right here in Illinois. I’m looking forward to a big Republican victory here, when voters send Governor Quinn packing and elect Bruce Rauner the next governor and his running mate, and our new RNC Rising Star, Evelyn Sanguinetti, the next lieutenant governor.
In the Senate races, we have so many new candidates to be proud of, who are going to help us win back the majority. Just next door, in Iowa, for example, we have a mother, a grandmother, a farmer, and a soldier. That’s Joni Ernst, who was featured in our video, and she’s going to show Bruce Braley what Iowa values are all about.
In the House, we’re not just going to protect our majority, we’re going to expand it. Across the country, Republicans are taking on out-of-touch Democrats to make that happen. Including Will Hurd, another Rising Star, who’s running in the 23rd District of Texas.
The RNC is giving our candidates access to more support, more tools, and better data than in midterms past.
And we’re working with our partners. Along with Senator John Cornyn, I’m chairing the Targeted State Victory Committee, the new joint fundraising effort between the NRSC and our state parties to help make sure our Senate candidates have the resources to win in November.
The RNC has deployed a permanent ground game unlike anything we’ve done before. We didn’t just create a few new programs. We established a new way of thinking. A national party, permanently in communities, year-round.
You know I like to quote Vince Lombardi. And he put it well when he said, “Winning is not a sometime thing; it’s an all the time thing. You don’t win once in a while; you don’t do things right once in a while; you do them right all of the time.”
We’re a stronger party this year, and we’re going to have a solid foundation for 2016. We’re going to be more than a party that shows up in the fall. We’re going to be more than a U-Haul trailer of cash for our nominee.
We’re going to work every single day to share a message of opportunity with every American, especially those who don’t know they’re Republicans yet.
Our debates will be good for our candidates and for voters—not a field day for the media.
And our convention in Cleveland is going to be world-class. Don’t take my word for it. Talk to our site selection committee. They’ll tell you that Cleveland is a city ready to roll out the welcome mat and help us nominate the next president of the United States.
But before we take the White House in 2016, we have to retake the Senate in November….
On every single issue, Harry Reid’s Senate has made life harder for working families.
And that’s why we have a very simple message for America: it’s time to fire Harry Reid.
The Republican-led House of Representatives has passed over 330 bills, including 43 jobs bills, that have gone nowhere in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Harry Reid won’t let them. He won’t put them to a vote.
So if you want jobs, fire Reid.
If you want better healthcare, cheaper energy, better schools, fire Reid.
If you’re tired of dysfunction and gridlock, fire Reid.
And if you want to stop the Obama agenda, fire Reid.
It doesn’t matter what Democrat is on the ballot in your state. A vote for a Democrat is a vote for Harry Reid. And if Harry Reid is in charge, it will be two more years of his way or the highway.
Thankfully, the majority of Americans aren’t going to stand for that—because they stand with us on important issues, like opposing ObamaCare.
Here’s a tip for Democrats. Healthcare reform is not a success when it makes healthcare more expensive, doctors harder to find, and insurance harder to keep.
In the last two years, ObamaCare has caused Americans to lose their jobs, lose their doctors, and lose their plans. In November, we get to return the favor and make sure Democrats lose their majority.
But it’s not just healthcare where the Democrats have it backward. The same is true on energy.
We’re the party that says we want to use every kind of energy, wind, solar, hydro, oil, gas, coal, nuclear, all of the above. So that your electric bill is cheap and it doesn’t take half your paycheck to fill up your car.
But the Democrat Party would who rather let Canada ship its oil to China than let them send it down here to America in the Keystone Pipeline.
Democrats say they don’t want that oil because they don’t want to burn fossil fuels. So their answer is to ship the oil to China. How do you think it gets there?
When it comes to education, Democrats are in the business of taking away opportunity from kids. We’re the party that says every child deserves a good school, and every parent should have the chance to choose that school.
They’re the party that sued Louisiana to take scholarships away from disadvantaged kids, to take kids out of good schools and send them back to failing schools.
They’re the party that wants to kill the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship. And they’re the party that won’t allow a vote on a commonsense charter school bill in Harry Reid’s Senate.
Finally, we’re the party that says we need to defend the Constitution. They’re the party voting to rewrite the First Amendment. It’s up to us to stop them….
Democrats have it backward. The First Amendment is sacred. ObamaCare is not.
In the end, every issue comes back to freedom. So many problems could be fixed if we just gave Americans their freedom back. The freedom they deserve—and the freedom we’re guaranteed by the Constitution.
Freedom for religious groups to live their lives according to their conscience.
Freedom for civic groups to speak their mind without harassment from the IRS.
Freedom for parents to choose the school that’s right for their kids.
Freedom for patients to choose their doctors, without needing permission from a bureaucrat.
Freedom for small businesses to overcome outdated regulation to hire more workers.
Freedom for the next generation not to pay the debt of this generation.
And freedom for everyone,…to find a good job that pay the bills and opens the door to the American Dream…
…we’re here in the Land of Lincoln. And it was the Great Emancipator who said that the Constitution, quote, “is the only safeguard of our liberties.”
If we let liberals undermine the Constitution, our freedoms disappear.
It’s up to us to remind Democrats that the government serves the people; people don’t serve government. The Constitution tells us that ultimate power is found in “we the people.”
“We the people” are not here for government to control. We’re here to control the government, because like Lincoln said, ours is a government, of the people, by people, for the people.
And come November, “we the people” are going to say fire Reid. Stop Obama. Protect the Constitution. And get America working.
We’re going take back the Senate. Expand our House majority. Elect great governors and Republican majorities in our state capitals.
So keep up the good work. God bless all of you…