Vol. 54, No. 1

In this edition

The Ripon Forum examines America’s economic rebound & why it’s a story every Republican should tell.

Winning with Women

Republican recruitment is breaking records in 2020, because more GOP women are stepping forward and saying, “I’m in.”

The Lessons of Brexit & Possible Parallels in the U.S.

With the United Kingdom set to leave the European Union, a look at how political turmoil in that country has mirrored similar turmoil in the United States, and how it may impact America’s election this year.

Europe’s Dark Cloud Over the World Economy

With Europe’s economy being about the same size as America’s, another European economic slowdown would have a major effect globally.


Over the past three years, the GOP has developed a strategy that has produced not only a thriving economy, but a winning narrative that voters need to hear about this fall.

GOP Voters are Sticking with Trump, but Centrist Voters are the Key

A View from Dubuque: Third in a Series

People Like the President’s Policies, but His Personality Gives Them Pause

A View from Macomb County: Third in a Series

The Economy has Prospered Under Trump, but the Local GOP has Struggled

A View from Northampton County: Third in a Series

To Area Voters, Trump is Standing Up to the Beltway Elite

A View from Trumbull County: Third in a Series

Some Gains for the Democrats, but the Strong Economy Makes November Too Close to Call

A View from Kenosha County: Third in a Series

The Issues May Change and the Map May Evolve, but America’s Two-Party System Endures

Veteran political observer Michael Barone discusses his recent book about the Republican and Democratic Parties and how their influence has risen and fallen over the years.

Ripon Profile of John Katko

John Katko discusses his bipartisan record in Congress and what he’s doing to address problems facing his home state.

Winning with Women

Republican Recruitment is Breaking Records in 2020

Recently, Republican talk show host Meghan McCain was ridiculed in the New York Times for disrupting her colleagues’ liberal tirades with her conservative counterpoints on The View.

Arizona Senator Martha McSally, the first female fighter pilot to fly in combat, was described as “unbecoming” and a “punk” for dismissive remarks she made to a CNN reporter’s persistent questioning.

Maine Senator Susan Collins was attacked by the left for her vote to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Democrats and liberal cable news talking heads fundamentally oppose the notion of conservative women who have values different from their own, women who are pro-life, support the Second Amendment, or champion something other than “Women’s Issues.”

Unfortunately, the last election did nothing but reinforce this narrative.  In 2018, 102 women were elected to the U.S. House of Representatives — a record.  Only 13 of those women were Republican.

Democrats are actively working to make conservative women extinct, and as one of the few GOP women left in the House Republican conference, I am taking it personally.  After suffering a 41-seat loss last cycle, I chose to step up and serve as the recruitment chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee in Washington, D.C. where I’ve committed to remaking our Party in a way more reflective of our diverse country and values.

Now, more than ever before, Republican women are stepping up and saying, “I’m in.”

That plan started with changing the way our Party recruited candidates.  With help from my fellow Members of Congress serving as Recruitment Captains, we went out looking for candidates who uniquely fit their district, reflect the diversity of America, and can win competitive races.  We didn’t stop because one person announced they were running.  We kept looking for the best candidates in these districts to win in November.  Our Recruitment Captains prioritized creating a Republican conference that better reflects our diverse national Republican Party.

The sacrifices of running for Congress are real.  We are asking Americans to leave their families, communities, and careers to spend hours upon hours fundraising, getting out their message, and driving all over their district meeting voters.

The sacrifices vary depending on the woman and her priorities, but once these women realized the positive impact they could make in their communities and country by serving in Congress, the results have been amazing

With support from Chairman Tom Emmer and others like Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, whose leadership PAC, Elevate-PAC, is designed to help elect Republican women, we are putting ourselves in a position to elect more Republican women to the House of Representatives.  A record 200 women have filed to run for the House this cycle which demolishes the previous record.

Now, more than ever before, Republican women are stepping up and saying, “I’m in.”

As a Party we should celebrate the diversity of our recruited candidates but we must also support their campaigns to get these amazing candidates across the finish line on Election Day.

Among them are standout candidates like Michelle Fischbach, the first woman to serve as president of the Minnesota Senate; Nancy Mace of South Carolina, the first woman to graduate from The Citadel’s Corps of Cadets; Jessica Taylor of Alabama, a former college athlete who raised her son during the day while earning her law degree at night; and Michelle Steel and Young Kim, both Korean-Americans from California who are matching their Democrat counterparts in fundraising. (Steel and Kim also represent 2 of the 146 people of color who are running as Republicans for the House of Representatives.)

All of these women are tenacious and fearless and despite Democrats’ best efforts to dissuade women from even thinking about voting Republican, there are a record number of women who are choosing to run with an “R” beside their name. As a Party we should celebrate the diversity of our recruited candidates but we must also support their campaigns to get these amazing candidates across the finish line on Election Day.

These dynamic leaders with records of success in their communities are a direct threat to the Democrats’ narrative and momentum from their 2018 victories. This cycle is just the beginning, and we won’t be backing down.

Susan Brooks represents the 5th District of Indiana in the U.S. House of Representatives. She serves as the Recruitment Chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee.