A new year has begun. I already see more people at the gym and more running on the side of the road. The question is, can they keep it up? Can they follow through on their goals for the new year? I feel the same way about the newly elected Congress. With the November elections behind, what lies ahead is the potential for a new, conservative agenda. Can we get it? Will Republicans follow through? Here is my wish list for 2011:

Ok, so what’s first? For me, there are several items that kind of all roll into one, but since you can’t go inside my brain, I’ll have to start somewhere. I think adherence to the Constitution is a great place to begin.

In a statement released today, incoming House Speaker John Boehner mentioned that he heard from people across his district who wanted “a Congress that abides by the Constitution.” Simple concept right? After all, the Constitution represents the rules for running this country. If we don’t follow the rules, what’s the point? So much of my other wish list could be made possible if Congress would just follow the Constitution.

To start off the new Congress, Republicans will put the Constitution front and center. The Washington Post reports that the GOP will do something that has never been done in the history of the Congress… they will read the Constitution aloud. Then, they will “require that every new bill contain a statement by the lawmaker who wrote it citing the constitutional authority to enact the proposed legislation.”

Next, we need real cuts in spending. I don’t want to hear anything about “slowing the growth” of this program or that program or the government in general. If you’re getting fat more slowly, guess what? You’re still getting fat. I want this government to get in shape. Smaller and less expensive… that’s the key. Cut programs, eliminate departments, send power back to the people of this country.

There’s no better place to start than to defund Obama’s massive and unconstitutional health care law. Americans didn’t want it, states and companies will not be able to afford it, and taxes will have to go sky high to pay for it. Oh, did I mention it’s unconstitutional? Oh right, I did. Of course, the law will likely not be completely repealed. Even if a repeal were passed in the House and Senate, Obama would just veto it. But, I’m looking for conservatives in Congress to do everything they can to dismantle it. On Sunday, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) noted on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that members of Congress will “try to defund the Obama care bill and start over.”

Taxes definitely need to be on the wish list. I know we just had a big battle to keep the status quo, but what did that gain us? Absolutely nothing. Some taxes are actually coming back. And the current tax rates are only set for another two years, leading to yet another political battle. Taxes are too high. Corporate taxes are the second highest in the entire world. Is it any wonder that America is in a financial funk and falling behind? When you put more emphasis on growing government rather than growing the private sector, bad things will happen!

Next, we have to do something about our Southern border. I know I risk being labeled a “racist” because I left out all the Canadians who are invading this country, but one thing at a time. The Southern border is a disaster. Drug cartels are becoming bolder. The federal government is still ignoring it’s own immigration laws, and liberals like Harry Reid and Barack Obama still want to give us an amnesty bill in some form or fashion. Enough is enough! We need troops on the border. If Mexican gangs step into U.S. soil, they and their entire operations need to be destroyed… wiped out… eliminated. Yes, it sounds tough, but again, we are talking about American territory. It is up to the federal government to protect it. It’s kind of hard for Americans to pursue happiness if they are afraid to go outside, because they might get killed.

And to close things off, there’s no better way to start the new year than with new leadership. We are getting some new leaders in the U.S. House, and it’s time for new leadership at the Republican National Committee. We don’t need stories to continue to linger about financial mismanagement, arrogance, or cronyism. We need an organization that can raise money and spend it appropriately. That’s its job.

As pointed out in the Washington Times, “the unreleased official budget of the RNC reveals that the Republican Party’s national governing body and premier fundraising apparatus begins the 2011-12 presidential election cycle more than $20 million in the hole.” That is insane.

Federal Election Commission records show a dismal picture for the next chairman. As of Dec. 29, the RNC had $15,013,443.70 in debts and loans — $12 million more than the deepest RNC financial hole in at least 14 years.

That $15 million in IOUs compares with the zero indebtedness in the comparable period before the 2007-08 presidential cycle, the insignificant $1,446 before the 2003-04 period, the $3 million going into the 1999-2000 cycle and the $2.5 million at the comparable point before the 1995-96 presidential election period.

The election is slated for January 14. It will be good to get someone new in place so that the RNC can begin the work of bringing back their major donors. This will be a tall task for any chairman, but there is no doubt that major donors have bailed out on Steele.

Ok, what did I miss? I believe this is a good start, but there is so much more that needs to be done. As long as these new conservatives stay conservative, I’ll be happy.

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