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Lou Dobbs, author and host of “Lou Dobbs Tonight” on the Fox Business Network, was known for years for his fierce rejection of both Democrat and GOP perspectives, but now admits he has changed greatly and believes the Republican Party is the only realistic vehicle for change.
However, he said the GOP must abandon social issues this election and “embrace all Americans around the traditional values” of the party.
“As a registered independent, it is clear to me now that going into the primaries, I’ve got to make the decision– as do millions of independents, as to whether or not we’re going to continue along this path or whether many of us will go over to the Republican Party and say, ‘We’re going to be part of the Republican Party. We want to be invited in. We want to feel at home there. And we want to make certain that this is a party committed to solutions and not just more rhetoric, not pandering but true effective governance in the national interest,'” Dobbs told WND.
Dobbs, who is author of the new book, “Upheaval: Winning Back the Country with Knowledge that Empowers, Ideas that Matter and Solutions that Work,” also wants a GOP that appeals to everyone, noting he believes former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney doomed his campaign when he said 47 percent of Americans had no incentive to embrace his campaign because they are “dependent upon government” and “pay no income tax.”
Also citing a poll showing 78 percent of Americans support legal abortions in at least some circumstances and the recent momentum for same-sex marriage, Dobbs calls for Republicans to forget the focus on social issues and embrace an economic agenda that will appeal to a wide swath of voters.
“I believe the Republican Party just has no choice but to embrace all Americans around the traditional values of the Republican Party,” he said. “That is a temperate foreign policy, a prudent fiscal policy, a pro-economic growth policy, a pro-prosperity policy and equal opportunity for all within our borders. To create a nation that is prosperous, that is at peace, and is focused on a brighter future rather than creating more debt for our children.”
Listen to Dobbs’ radio interview with WND:
"Upheaval" details flawed policies from the economy to energy and from education to foreign affairs. But Dobbs said one of the biggest problems is that politicians from both sides forget who they work for.
"The jobs of both political parties must start with individual citizens. Their responsibilities are to the individual interests of Americans and the broad national interest, but we cannot lose sight of the citizen," he said. "Frankly, at this point, both parties are looking at the individual citizen as a consumer, as a taxpayer or in some other role. But seldom do they acknowledge that the citizen is the foundation of this nation, and policies have to be created to benefit our citizens, not business interests, not union interests and certainly not special interests."
In "Upheaval," Lou Dobbs explains how to start thinking clearly again, how to engage in issues that matter, how to win arguments based on ideas and knowledge and how to make a difference that's imperative to our survival.
The nexus of big government, big banks and politics as usual is preventing the U.S. from taking the most effective approach to some of our greatest national challenges, according to Dobbs. This greatly worries him because Dobbs believes they were never designed to accumulate this much power, and individual citizens are increasingly powerless to stand up to those massive entities.
"The first thing we must do is deal with these problems in terms of scale. We have government that is far too large. We have permitted too many of our institution, our corporations, to get way too big. I enumerate within the book the massive consolidation of economic power within the banking industry," said Dobbs, noting there are fewer than half the number of banks in the U.S. than we had 20 years ago, and just 12 banks control 69 percent of commercial bank assets in the country.
"That is an extraordinary concentration of economic power," he said. "With it, of course, comes immense social and political power that is not, in my judgment, in the economic interest of the nation, and it's certainly not appropriate to the American nation."
Much of "Upheaval" cites key figures showing how the current policies of the U.S. government are major failures, from record spending on education for worse and worse results to massive investment in renewable energy, when it's a tiny fraction of the energy what America produces.
Although a longtime critic of comprehensive immigration reform, Dobbs believes House Republicans are on the right track with their emerging immigration legislation.
"(Republicans) have to have the guts to lead. They're doing it right now in the House of Representatives. No one has done better than Congressman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. He and his committee have put forward, in four pieces of legislation, the solution to illegal immigration and border security in this country," he said.
"Now, Speaker of the House John Boehner and the rest of the Republican Party have to decide whether or not they're going to support the remarkable, landmark legislation that Goodlatte has pushed through."
For all the rough economic waters in recent years, Dobbs believes we're seeing signs of noticeable economic improvement, and the problems America faces can be conquered.
"There are not any challenges we face right now that we cannot resolve as Americans, that we cannot bring to bear our ingenuity and our resources and persevere and overcome," he said. "We have to face facts, and both political parties have to face facts that we've got a lot of work to do."