Sam Brownback is in New Hampshire today and contrasted himself with his rivals.
Sen. Sam Brownback on Tuesday jabbed at President Bush and two Republican rivals, saying the presidency isn’t a foreign policy classroom.
Brownback, a former chairman of the Senate’s foreign relations committee, was referring to former Republican governors Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee. In the process, he also took a jab at the man they all seek to replace, former Texas Gov. George W. Bush.
Here’s what he said:
“I really believe this next president needs to go in with knowledge on foreign policy and not learn it on the job,” said the Kansas senator, a vocal activist against the genocide in Darfur. “We have a tendency to elect governors as president because people like executive experience. I don’t have any problem with that. The problem is most governors don’t have foreign policy experience.”
Sam makes a very good point here. It is conventional wisdom that Governors, not Senators are more likely to become President. But take a look at the top Dems: Clinton, Senator; Obama: Senator. Executive experience isn’t the only measure. Remember Bill Clinton? He was a Governor from Arkansas. So was Huckabee. Do we really want another Clinton? We’d certainly have one if we accept Mittens: he’s known as Slick Romney for a reason. He’s as slippery as Bill Clinton. No thanks.
Unlike former Governors, Sam Brownback, as a former chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee, understands foriegn policy.
Brownback also repeated his strategy to fight terrorism. He would employ an approach similar to the U.S. policy of containment toward communism during the last century to deal with this century’s “long-term battle that we’re in right now with militant Islamists.”
Like President Clinton before him, a President Mittens would stick his finger in the air and say what he thinks people want to hear. He seems to have no actual positions of his own. Another poll-directed focus-grouped President? No thanks.
Sam Brownback on his appeal and approach:
“I think the message I’m putting forward resonates. It’s a bit of a different message. I confess that to you, it’s a bit of a different one,” he said. “When people hear this, people think about it a little while. What I found in Iowa, as people thought about it, they thought, ’That’s what I think, too.’”
Sam’s strong third place showing in the Iowa straw poll should give him a decent boost in New Hampshire, the “first-in-the-nation primary state.”
“We’re building a grassroots campaign. I am not an overly funded candidate,” he said after his talk. “We just finished third in the Iowa straw poll. That’s a ticket on forward _ third out of 11, we’re there.”
There’s a lot of work ahead. Let’s hope that Senator Brownback and fellow Brownbackers are up to the task.