America is at a pivotal crossroads. Following the recent historic election, hundreds of new state legislators and dozens of governors have come into office with a mandate to reform our broken and bankrupt state governments and repair our ailing economy. While these new state officials undoubtedly face an uphill battle, their election represents a tremendous opportunity to restore fiscal sanity and reaffirm our county's commitment to free enterprise and limited government.
As the only organization in the country dedicated to building, supporting and mobilizing a nationwide network of state-focused, market-oriented think tanks, State Policy Network is in a prime position to launch our new initiative, Fueling the New Revolution. This project is specifically designed to equip state policy makers with the tools and ideas that can have real impact. As part of this effort, we are currently working with our state affiliates to deliver solid, well-researched policy solutions to lawmakers, opinion leaders and the media.
These solutions include, but are not limited to:
- Reforming state budget and tax policy
- Improving government transparency and accountability
- Transforming our education system and expanding school choice
- Creating real, market-driven health care reform
- Reestablishing Federalism and individualrights established by the Constitution
The SPN network is made up of 59 freedom centers, at least one in every state, actively working every day to advance common sense public policy at the state and local levels. Leaders of State Policy Network think tanks are currentlyadvising new governors in states like South Carolina, Florida, Maine, Washington and Georgia, and staff members from various organizations served on gubernatorial transition teams in 30 states.
State Policy Network is continually working to expand and enlarge the impact of this national network. We support the infrastructure and bolster the capabilities of state think tanks through a variety of in-depth training programs and by sharing technological, financial, and other resources that enable organizations to have a greater impact in their states. In addition, we provide leadership development, management training, and networking opportunities for think tank professionals. After all, developing the talent of great leaders today-and a support team of our future leaders-is critical to ensuring that we can meet the difficult challenges ahead.
With 44 states and the District of Columbia projecting budget shortfalls this year, there will be no easy fixes. And with each state facing its own unique set of challenges, top-down, one-size-fits-all, bureaucratic solutions will not work. That is why State Policy Network and its member think tanks will be leading the charge to reform state governments, and Fueling the New Revolution with innovative ideas and common sense solutions designed to reestablish the states as the "laboratories for democracy."