The pundits began this Republican National Convention with the catch phrase "This isn't your grand dad's Republican Party," which for me left its meaning open to a lot of different possible interpretations, so, like many Americans, I watched the last three days of the RNC to see if I could get some kind of a clue to what that phrase meant. By the time the 82 year old Hollywood icon Mr. Clint Eastwood left the podium on Thursday night one thing was certain, this is a party that no longer has a stick up its tokhes and knows how to loosen up a bit.
I walked away from the television set on Thursday night fully convinced that the days of the rough and tumble, antagonistic, in-your-face style of a Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh POV was now a thing of the by-gone past...and, I'm okay with that. Why? Because Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and the new younger leaders of the party like Marco Rubio, et. al., are intelligent and savvy enough to pull it off.
This new Republican Party, now led by Mitt Romney and Congressman Ryan encompasses two generations and represents a different tone for what has been commonly thought of as a rambunctious group of politicos. This isn't to say that Romney and Ryan can't get their hair up (and between the two of them there is lots of hair), but they appear to be a whole lot cooler about showing that anger and do so without seeming hurt, flustered or taken-a-back. They're not slick, that would smell of a different kind of politician we don't need, but they are smart. Romney represents the senior circuit, those beaten back by the every day of life with its blessings and hardships. He shows a life well lived but with its fair share of personal struggle and heartache yet, because of his tenacity, faith, and work ethic is still hopeful with a more enlightened and seasoned knowledge of what does and doesn't work. Ryan represents those young and youngish intelligent, smart-minded persons who see the direction Mr. Obama and the Democratic party of the last eight years have taken this country and are wise enough to realize the outcome will be a future for their children in which America will no longer be the place of opportunity and hope for those willing to work for it, and they are determined to apply all their strength and abilities to ensure that outcome is changed for the better. They remind me of my grandparents and great grandparents who had little but worked hard for us, their kids and grand children, to ensure their future would be a bright one full of opportunity and that promised American dream would be at the end of that rainbow.
Mitt Romney's new Republican Party is kinder but not soft. Gentler but determined. Patient but not push-overs. Bright but not arrogant. Well intentioned but far from naive'. Most importantly, its new leader is experienced with decades of learning from trial and error under his belt. He knows, not by hope and vision alone, but by years of getting his hands in the mix. Unlike President Obama he is no "amateur." Mitt Romney has been there and done that and can work through a problem or situation with that skilled knowledge and experience to guide his problem solving and lead this nation back to economic stability and greatness on the world stage.
This may not be your grand daddy's Republican Party, but with Mitt Romney now at its helm it can and will be guided for the next several years with the seasoned expertise that only a grand daddy can amass.