Newt refused to yield an inch, which was exhilaratingly refreshing, not just to me but to a great number of people in the audience who are sick and tired of being accused, in so many words, of being racist purely by virtue of the race-neutral policies they support.
Not only did Newt reject the loaded premise of the question; he even responded in race-neutral terms, offering a powerful defense of the old-fashioned work ethic and infusing it with an example from his own personal experience. Then he looked Juan right in the eye and said, "The fact is that more people have been put on food stamps by Barack Obama than any president in American history." Newt then capped it off with an encore affirmation of his belief that every American, irrespective of his background, is endowed by God with the right to pursue happiness and that he is going to continue to help poor people get jobs, even if that makes liberals unhappy.
This, in my words, is what Newt was also telling Juan: "Juan, along with other Americans, I am sick and tired -- do you hear me, Juan? -- sick and tired of not being able to give voice to America's founding principles without being accused by sanctimonious liberals of bigotry or lacking compassion. Read my lips, Juan: Conservatism is not racism; conservatism is more compassionate than liberalism; conservatism brings real results rather than peaking, like liberalism, at the point of allegedly good intentions. Look at this audience, Juan. Like me, they're fed up with the finger-pointing. If you want to point fingers, look no further than President Obama, who, in the name of helping Americans, is bankrupting this nation and whose policies are destroying the economy, with minorities being hardest hit. So please spare me the lectures, Juan."
Newt demonstrated how conservatives should communicate truths and respond to slanderous attacks in the public arena. It's time all conservatives learned to overcome this morbid fear of their own shadows when it comes to articulating conservative principles. It's past time that they stand up to the liberal and PC bullying. There is a strong, aching hunger in Middle America for our side, our leaders, to fight back. Newt's subsequent surge in no small part is a resounding reflection of that. Let's take back the narrative.