Preface: Falling Off the Horse is Not An Option

Posted by Terri McCormick On October - 25 - 2010

state_floor_cap“Why do we fall?… So that we may learn how to pick ourselves up and stand on our own two feet.”  – Jessie Boyle, 1944, Irish American businesswoman

“Power is distancing … Politicians must know two languages and cultures-here and home. However, home soon becomes lost, forgotten by those who reach the seats of power.” Wall Street Journal contributing editor Peggy Noonan writes that the GOP is losing confidence because of what she calls “detachment from the ground.” It is clear to Noonan, a former President Reagan speech writer and confidant, that career politicians soon forget who sent them into office and why they are there.

Noonan points to what is obvious to me: that the theatre of public office, seldom resembles the reality of public office. Despite the talk of decreasing spending, it’s skyrocketed under Republican rule. Promises of smaller government have long been forgotten, just as securing our nation’s borders is a spoken priority, with little action backing it up.

The Democrats offer little more. Democrats are tagged as big spenders-big on ideas, short on delivery. Noonan contends-and I agree-that both parties are missing the boat. Party leadership has led both parties into dark, shadowy places with no light to see by.

The stories of American politics told in this book are based on fact. It is with the painstaking research and support of my former chief of staff, Jared Guzman, that specific dates and testimony have been cited. My home state will surprisingly resemble most states across this nation. The need for leadership and government reform is not a vacuous one. I have used personality types, rather than individuals in most of the stories from the front lines of politics, so that you may recognize the characters as your own.

Direct observations and empirical research was conducted for upwards of six years, so that the facts, actual events and testimony could provide a factual basis for this book. It is my aim to make an appeal to all Americans to become active and engaged in the political process, so that we may change the way things are.

The audience for this book is the American people-citizen, candidate and media alike-who represent the foundational trilogy needed to put our country right. I will take you behind the curtain of elective office into the belly of the best of American politics for one purpose: to give you the tools to recognize the games of the political class. With this knowledge, it is possible to finally peel off the masks of virtuous deception and become better citizens and leaders. To the courageous idealists among us, it is time for a new “we the people” to step forward and change the way things are.

The political gender referred to in What Sex Is a Republican? has no biological or anatomical designation. Rather, it refers to a silent coup-a class warfare unlike any others. We may be familiar with the notion of class warfare between the upper class and the middle/lower class, Democrats and Republicans, conservatives and liberals. I can assure you that there is a class that transcends all of these boundaries in American politics. It is the political class made up of young and old, men and women, who believe they are entitled to their positions and endowed with an elite arrogance of self-service at the expense of the American people.

What Sex Is a Republican? could just as easily be written as What Sex Is a Democrat? Both major political parties have in them a political animus endemic to the political class. So embedded and institutionalized are these political animals that they have built around them political silos (extreme partisanship), paid for by unwitting fat cats fed on the emotional sound bites of well-trained political lackeys. So entrenched is the political class in the pursuit of self-preservation in public office that they would strangle the dreams and hopes of American ingenuity and innovation in its crib.

The political class’ stronghold on my grassroots race for the United States Congress brought the revolution of class warfare to my door and to the doors of my constituents in northeast Wisconsin. It was during my primary race in 2006, within my own political party, that all of us-voters and candidates alike-realized that our free elections were not as free as we had once thought.


[i] Noonan, Peggy. 2006. “Baseless Confidence,” Wall Street Journal [], May 11.

Terri McCormick honored for excellence in government relations by Cambridge's Who's Who industry experts