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Former candidate Evan McMullin: Republicans need to return to principles

A group of more than 150 Republicans, led by Donald Trump critics Evan McMullin and Miles Taylor, announced a new political movement that takes aim at former President Donald Trump's hold on the GOP and calls for a reform of the party. Photo Credit: The Washington Post/Getty Images

SALT LAKE CITY — A group of Republicans, led by Utah’s Evan McMullin, are signing a new document that emphasizes principles over personalities.

Former presidential candidate Evan McMullin is part of a group of more than 150 Republicans that have signed “a call for American renewal,” a new manifesto urging the GOP to embrace their core values. He joined Inside Sources host Boyd Matheson to discuss the document released Friday.

Principles above egos, Evan McMullin says

“So much our politics is about personalities and whether you’re for this person or that person. But that’s not the way it should be. It should be about ideas, and it should be about principle,” McMullin said. “When we start with principles, there’s an amazing opportunity to find common ground, and to find a way forward. That’s something I’ve seen, the power of principles, especially to unite people across the political spectrum within a party.”

“I love the fact that you frame that in the context of principles are practical,” Boyd said. “Sometimes people will criticize and say, well those are just highfalutin ideas or that’s just big ethereal stuff, philosophical things. But the principles really are practical because it leads us to that common ground . . . common policy in terms of things that will impact the lives of everyday Americans.”

“I think there’s an appetite in America now for returning to some of these basic things, given how divided we are and how our politics have broken down,” McMullin said. “But we’ve got to change the discussion. It can’t be any longer about, are you for this person or against that person. We have to get back to ideas.”

Start at truth

“Give us an example of some of the things that you’re calling for. In this American renewal?” Boyd asked.

“We’re we’re calling for our leaders and our citizens to be seekers of truth and promoters of truth,” McMullin said. “When we’re committed to truth and reason, then it’s much easier to find common ground on difficult issues and to find a way forward, and therefore, it’s much easier for us to govern ourselves.”

Related: Republicans, including Evan McMullin, float idea of forming “center-right” party

Protecting America’s resources

“Often we look at things like climate or stewardship of the land or resources as a left/right issue. You actually addressed conservation as a shared stewardship of America’s resources. Tell us about that,” Boyd said.

We consider vital our shared stewardship of America’s resources – natural, environmental, and financial. We accept responsibility to conserve for ourselves and future generations these public assets, and to protect them from both natural and man-made harms.

                                                                                                                                                               — A Call for American Renewal

“We’re responding to what we see in the country which is, in some cases, a disregard for these precious resources, whether they’re taxpayer dollars or the environment or our precious minerals. They are important to our prosperity, important to our national security. They’re important for the next generation,” McMullin said.

Is this about a third party?

“We talked about that idea of so many Americans are disaffected from the center left to center right. Is this about a new party? Is this about the Republican Party? How should people view these principles, and therefore, what what happens next?” Boyd asked.

“This set of principles, a Call for American Renewal, isn’t about any one person, and that’s the point,” McMullin said. “We’ve got Republicans from the side of the party who supported President Trump. We’ve got Republicans from the part of the party that did not.

“We also have people writing into us who are Democrats and Independents, saying ‘Hey, this seems to be for Republicans, but I believe these things, too,” he said. “We think the principles are enormously powerful to unite people across the political spectrum.”

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app. 

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