Indiana’s gain is the nation’s loss? Maybe

As Republicans fret over the battle to select a presidential nominee, a Human Events commentary from the chief Indiana Republican Party spokesman offers some thoughts about Mitch Daniels:

For a while now, Indiana’s neighbors have been scratching their heads, wondering “how do they do it?” How have we Hoosiers become the fiscal envy of the nation? (Answer: Spend less than you take in.) How did we become so revered for education and government reform? (Answer: Focus on the student and the taxpayer, not special interests.) Now, those same neighbors are asking themselves, “How in the heck did they get a right-to-work law passed in the face of hostile opposition committed to compulsory unionism?”

The answer starts with the simple principle that “big change requires big majorities,” as Gov. Mitch Daniels likes to say. It’s not enough to have a vision for the future. Without an army of change agents standing with you, nothing will ever get done. So over the course of several election cycles, Daniels demonstrated his brand of leadership by channeling his political clout toward legislative races. In the 2010 cycle, Republicans gained a 60-40 majority in the House and a quorum proof 37-13 margin in the Senate.

Next, use a little trick we all learned in school: Do your homework. When the advocates of the status quo cite a union-funded report and use that biased report to augment their arguments, solid facts buttress your side better than just a kneejerk partisan retort.

That’s among the many reasons Hoosiers hold Daniels in such high regard. When in 2011 it became clear a lack of a right-to-work law in our state hindered our ability to compete for jobs, Daniels hit the books. He studied the issue, pored over data, talked to people around the state and country and digested all the information before drawing a final conclusion a year later.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...