By Jack Fink

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Mitt Romney, his campaign, and many Republicans were stunned when he lost to President Barack Obama during a weak economy.

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This new report finds if the GOP wants to win back the White House, it can no longer be your father’s Republican party.

Katrina Pierson of Garland is a Tea Party member who agrees with the report that Republicans need to reach out to people younger than 30, women, and minorities. “It’s great they acknowledge it’s time to start functioning like a party instead of a country club. We’ve excluded single women, we’ve excluded young people, we’ve excluded social issues whether it be abortion, gay marriage, we’ve excluded everyone in the party, and that’s why you see people in the party are over 50.”
But Pierson doesn’t believe Republicans should change their beliefs — just welcome those with different ones.

The report also says Republicans need to attract Hispanic, Asian, and African-American voters. By 2050, minorities will become the majority in the U.S., and the Census Bureau says Texas is one of five states that are already “minority-majority.”

Most minorities voted for the President, not Romney.

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Adryana Boyne of Dallas is national director for Voces Action, a non-profit organization that educates Hispanics on conservative issues. She supports the GOP’s decision to spend $10 million to court minorities. “I think it could take a while, but with this investment, they can hear the right commercials, they can hear the right messages. We do need to do more minorities with the communities.”

But many conservatives are already blasting this report. Cathie Adams, a social conservative who once headed the state Republican party, says Republicans should not surrender their values, but stick to them. She believes that if Republicans nominate a true conservative — which she says they haven’t done during the past two Presidential elections — they would win the White House. Adams says grass-roots Republicans all over Texas aren’t talking about loosening their values or standards, but standing firm.

CBS 11 political analyst John Weekley says Republicans need to convince voters why their policies are better for them. “If I don’t perceive a benefit, not only am I not going to vote for you, I’m not going to go out and vote for anybody.”

The Republicans’ report suggests reducing the number of primary debates from 20 in 2012 to 10-12 for the next contest.

The first debate wouldn’t take place before September 1,2015. It also recommends moving the national party’s convention from late August or early September to late June or July. The report says that would allow the nominee more time to begin the general election phase of his or her campaign. If the convention is moved up, the report says primaries would have to be held no later than May 15th. State Republican parties would have to agree to that.

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