Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the 2022 midterm elections should have served as a “wake-up” call for the Republican Party.
Addressing the annual gathering of grassroots activists at CPAC on Friday, Mr. Pompeo said the GOP should have “won big,” but instead failed to capture the Senate and “barely captured” the House.
“We lost three elections in a row and the popular vote in seven of the last eight elections,” Mr. Pompeo said. “There are many reasons for this, but one of them is I think [voters] lost trust in the conservative ideas, and this is one of the tasks in front of us, and I am convinced we can do it because we are right.”
Mr. Pompeo is considering a bid for the 2024 Republican nomination for president, a move that would put him on a crash course with his ex-boss, former President Donald Trump.
On Friday, Mr. Pompeo said conservatives must show they are ready to right the ship and lead through words and deeds.
“We need a party, a conservative party, that we can be proud to call home again, rooted in our founding ideas, led by people of real character, competence, and commitment to the mission that brought you all here today, restoring an America that is not only great, but moral, muscular, decent, ready to stare down the forces of unfreedom — not just on Twitter, in the media, but in every place this miracle today is under threat,” he said.
After Mr. Trump lost the 2020 election, his image took another hit in the 2022 midterms when his preferred candidates came up short in key races that were considered winnable.
Mr. Trump’s star, however, is unmatched at CPAC, signaling his firm hold on the conservative movement, which drives primary elections.
It also speaks to the challenges that Mr. Pompeo and others will face if they enter the presidential race.
“The future of our American miracle is on the line in a way that I have not seen since, goodness gracious, since maybe I was in high school,” Mr. Pompeo said. “Our greatest threats are here, they are from within, it is the real challenge we faced today.”
“We are losing respect for individual freedom, a unified faith in the American purpose and a shared commitment to passing this on to our children is at risk,” he said.