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Gingrich to SRLC: Let's Be the Party of 'Yes'

6:25 PM, Apr 8, 2010 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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There's a Voyeur joke in that headline, I'm sure of it...

The Southern Republican Leadership Conference starts today, and Newt Gingrich is the featured speaker on the first night of the three-day conference, 2012 early speculation extravaganza.

His message? Move beyond the perennial Democratic pejorative, the Party of No:

"To win in 2010 and 2012, it's not enough to say no to the radical agenda of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid," Gingrich said in a statement. "Tonight's speech will explain why real leadership requires Republicans to offer a compelling vision of safety, prosperity, and freedom that stands in vivid contrast to Obama's secular, socialist, machine now running Washington."

I imagine his speech will mention ideas and idea guys in the party—Paul Ryan's "Roadmap," in particular. The problem with Republican communicators and politicians is that their "compelling vision of safety, prosperity, and freedom" too often consists of saying, "we have a compelling vision of safety, prosperity, and freedom." Newt's pretty good at making policy talk interesting—creating a compelling vision with action items— so it will be interesting to hear what I'd guess will be a practical vision wrapped up with some pretty good prose.

It'll also be interesting to see what kind of reception he gets from attendees after his endorsement of Dede Scozzafava in NY-23 has tempered grassroots ardor for the former Speaker.

Also speaking tonight are a collection of my personal favorites— Liz Cheney and Mary Matalin, and J.C. Watts.

Friday: Sarah Palin, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, and Texas Gov. Rick Perry between noon and 3:30 p.m.

Saturday: Mike Pence, Rick Santorum, Haley Barbour, Ron Paul, Michael Steele

The event will be livestreamed online, here, and will be on C-SPAN and C-SPAN.org.

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