Vol. 54, No. 6

In this edition

This edition of the Ripon Forum features the results of a post-election survey of the nation’s electorate, which finds that Americans still want their leaders in Washington to work together.

A Patriotic, Pro-Worker Republican Party Is Emerging

November’s historic turnout suggests the political coalitions that constitute our two-party system are once again shifting.

The Ghosts of Budgets Past, Present & Future

Ebenezer Scrooge would have certainly asserted of Congress’ budget process: “it is dead, dead as a door-nail.” In the spirit of the season, it is worth examining why the process now lies with old Marley in the graveyard.

Why Macomb Stayed Red

Trump’s successes in Macomb during the last two cycles may signal a longer-term partisan change in the County.

Why Northampton Turned Blue

Trump’s inability to repeat in Northampton County was undoubtedly affected by intense dissatisfaction with his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Voters will be heading into 2021 frustrated about the political environment and wary that either political party or its leaders has all the answers facing the country.


Meet 10 Members of the GOP Freedom Force Who Knocked Off Incumbent Democrats

The New Guard: Stephanie Bice (OK-5)

“Hopefully we’ll see, now that the election is over, some coming together and trying to actually govern again.”

The New Guard: Michelle Fischbach (MN-7)

“Families across western Minnesota simply want a government that protects our communities and spends taxpayer dollars responsibly.”

The New Guard: Carlos Gimenez (FL-26)

“This country needs to start to work together. We have threats from outside and inside, and for us to keep fighting makes no sense whatsoever.”

The New Guard: Yvette Herrell (NM-2)

“For far too long, we’ve seen division in Washington, and the losers are the people, because our values are not being represented.”

The New Guard: Ashley Hinson (IA-1)

“The partisan rhetoric – the infighting – is unacceptable to me and I know it’s unacceptable to the voters in Iowa’s first district.”

The New Guard: Young Kim (CA-39)

“For the longest time, the Republican Party has been the party of opportunities, and I’m an example of that.”

The New Guard: Nancy Mace (SC-1)

“It is time to stop rebuilding the world and start rebuilding America.”

The New Guard: Burgess Owens (UT-4)

“Now, more than ever, we need leaders that will stand for their principles and won’t compromise their values for political opportunities.”

The New Guard: Maria Elvira Salazar (FL-27)

“I vow that I will represent the spirit that lives in this district – the ultimate melting pot.”

The New Guard: Michelle Steel (CA-48)

“This vote showed that minorities who may look or speak differently than most not only have a place in this Republican Party but can be elected to the United States Congress.”

Why We Need Federal Election Standards

Most advanced democracies, even federal ones, have a national agency that guarantees standard voting registration processes that make it straightforward to vote.

States Should Set Their Own Election Rules to Protect Liberty

Any national federal standard — whether it be voter ID, absentee ballot availability, or even voter qualifications — would be enforced with a decidedly Democratic Party bias.

Ripon Profile of Tom Emmer

Tom Emmer discusses the outcome of this past election, and how Republicans can take back the House in 2022.

The New Guard: Maria Elvira Salazar (FL-27)

“I vow that I will represent the spirit that lives in this district – the ultimate melting pot.”

Snapshot of Victory: Maria Elvira Salazar defeated first term incumbent Democrat Rep. Donna Shalala by a vote of 51.4% to 48.6%.

Background: Congresswoman-elect Salazar is a prominent Spanish television journalist whose career has taken her from covering local issues to sitting down with leaders from across the globe. Her district is roughly 73 percent Hispanic and is a notable Republican pickup after political pundits across the country predicted that the districts demographics would buoy the Democratic incumbents chances for reelection. 

Salazar was born in Miamis Little Havana neighborhood to parents who emigrated from Cuba when Fidel Castro ascended to power. They came to America so they could raise a family in a land where individual liberty and freedom were not only protected but celebrated. Salazar would go on to receive her Bachelor of Arts in communications from the University of Miami and later earn her Master of Public Administration degree from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. 

Over her three-decade-long career in journalism, which would earn her five Emmy Awards, Salazar would cover stories from South America to the nations capital. She started off by taking on local stories in Southern Florida for Univision before moving to CNN Español, where she would cover the White House and Gulf War. After returning to Univision, Salazar would boost her journalism credentials through her coverage of the Salvadoran Civil War and her in-depth reporting in Cuba – which led to her historic one-on-one interview with Fidel Castro himself. 

She would go on to become the national news anchorwoman for Telemundo and had her own show on the Miami-based network Mega TV. 

Throughout her noteworthy career, Salazar interviewed prominent individuals such as U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton & George W. Bush, Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar, Alvaro Uribe, Mexican President Vicente Fox, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, Augusto Pinochet, Nicolas Maduro, and Juan Guaidó.

Legislative Goals for Congress: One of Salazar’s primary goals is help facilitate job growth. Since the COVID-19 outbreak began, thousands of people in Florida’s 27th Congressional District have seen their work hours reduced or have lost their jobs completely. She would create an employment division in her office dedicated to helping those out of work find new opportunities or learn new skills. 

Salazar has also said access to affordable healthcare will be a priority for her in Washington, and this includes maintaining protections for those with preexisting conditions and making sure young adults can stay in their parent’s plan up until they turn 26. Furthermore, she will push for letting the government negotiate drug prices and will try to create more competition by lifting the restrictions preventing individuals and families from buying health insurance across state lines.  

Key Quote:As your Congresswoman, I vow that I will represent the spirit that lives in this district – the ultimate melting pot.  I want Washington to know that the American Latino Community is not the caricature that they have painted in the media. We did not come to this country not to take, but to give. We want to build on this land, and we want to stay. Latinos are not victims, we are patriots. We care. We have not only love, but we have great gratitude for this country.” 

“And when faced with the so-called Democratic-Socialists, I will tell them that we have seen that dogma in action already and it does not work.”  (Source: Victory Speech on election night.)