DES MOINES, January 28, 2016 — With less than 24 hours to go before the Fox News Republican Debate, former businesswoman Carly Fiorina is making her case to be President of the United States. At Rube’s Steakhouse in Waukee, Iowa, people came away impressed with what they heard.
The wide age range of the crowd was interesting. It went from mature women to young girls who wanted to see an example of what they could one day aspire to become.
Fiorina has been fitted with a halo by some, ridiculed by others. She is a human being with a story worth telling. Yes, she was fired from Hewlett Packard. Yes, she had an influential father who helped her rise the corporate ladder more quickly than most people could.
She also beat cancer. She saw her child predecease her due to the scourge of drugs. Fiorina has faced experiences more difficult and wrenching than most of us have faced, and she is still standing proudly.
She has little regard for “some candidates running who’ve never made a tough decision in their life.”
She ridiculed Donald Trump for having a “bromance” with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Foreign policy is one area where Fiorina is in clear command of the threats and the way to neutralize them.
Her expertise in the technology field goes beyond cellphones as gadgets. She understands that “Technology is a weapon” to be used in strengthening American foreign policy.
She observed, “Leadership has nothing to do with the size of your office.” It also has nothing to do with the size “of your ego.” The target of that jab was unmistakable.
“A leader is a servant.”
Fiorina was unflustered by a bad microphone that faded in and out. She received a standing ovation for her remarks.
When it came to the questions, Fiorina was masterful. She connected with people on an emotional level.
When one woman mentioned a relative with Alzheimer’s disease, Carly was empathetic. Her own father died of it.
“I’m a walking talking pre-existing condition. I really do understand.”
“We must repeal Obamacare” is a standard line, but Fiorina backed it up with plenty of substance.
We must return to “zero-based budgeting.” One necessary solution would be to “move money back to the states.” This would be “so they can manage high-risk pools.”
Additionally, “every provider must publish their costs on a regular basis.”
With health insurance, she noted that we have never tried an actual free market.
Returning to her area of expertise, she showed again how technology extends into other issues. The technology sector is ruthlessly competitive. We expect more all the time. This is the standard that must be set for healthcare once we remove the constraints in that industry as has been done with technology.
A young girl asked her what her favorite part of the Constitution was. The child was adorable, and Carly hit it out of the park.
She loves Amendment 10 because it gives power to the states.
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
She offered more conservative truisms.
The government has messed up education. “Socialism makes income inequality worse. Look at the last eight years.” Private industry gives us the cellphone, while government runs the DMV. Everybody knows which works better.
Fiorina will not have a revolving door cabinet of lobbyists. She has three criteria for her cabinet. She wants “leaders, not managers.” She knows that the best teams have different kinds of people. This helps prevent groupthink. lastly, she demands “truth tellers,” especially people who are truthful with her.
While the concept of distinguishing between leaders and managers comes straight from the book of General George Patton, it remains sound advice.
She attacked crony capitalism and said that Donald Trump is the “ultimate crony capitalist.” Hillary Clinton made millions selling access. Trump made billions buying it.
As for how to deal with the media, she said Iowa is about the everyday people who came to hear her. “You can change the media”
Time will tell if Fiorina herself is more qualified to be a leader or a manager. She can come across as technocratic, competent enough to manager the bureaucracy but not a blazing visionary. She does not come across as ideological.
After nearly eight years of ideology balanced with incompetence, her approach very well could be more than sufficient.
The young girls in the audience were truly inspired by her. After all, Carly Fiorina did not ride the coattails of a talented husband and then claim the mantle of feminism. She made it to the top on her own merits, and it far superior to her Democrat female counterpart in terms of accomplishments.
Hillary Clinton promotes her gender. Fiorina promotes her skill set. The contrast is stark, and for Fiorina, highly effective. Her support is not as wide as that of the front-runners, but it runs very deep.