Gay marriage, right to life, the legalization of marijuana -- where do family values issues fit into the Republican party these days? Who better to ask than some former reality T.V. stars? That may seem odd, but not when one of them is freshman Congressman Sean Duffy, R-Wisc., and the other is republican pundit, author, and stay-at-home mother of six, Rachel Campos-Duffy.
Both are familiar faces from their days as cast members on MTV's "Real World." But now, they are a pro-life, fiscally conservative couple who traveled from their home in Ashland, Wisconsin to Washington for their first Conservative Political Action Conference.
This year, much of the conversation at CPAC has centered on economic issues -- like the debt and unemployment. But there's also been some talk about what is missing -- and who is missing because of it.
Some family values organizations, like the Family Research Council and Concerned Women for America are skipping the conference this year. Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council, says his group is uncomfortable with the conference's "leftward drift."
Congressman Duffy says he's not worried about whether issues like abortion have been put on the back burner. "They [family values issues] are very much a real part of the conservative movement. However when people are losing their jobs and can't pay their mortgage and are concerned about their kids futures with a 14 trillion dollar debt, those are the issues that are at the forefront of people's minds" Duffy says.
His wife Rachel argues that economic issues are in fact family values issues. She says, "I think addressing the debt and addressing the unemployment is a family values issue. When families that have an unemployed parent or both parents -- families fall apart."
Rachel has come a long way from her arguments with Puck on "Real World: San Francisco." In fact, she moderated a panel at CPAC on the influence of pop culture.
Check out Uma Pemmaraju's interview with the Duffy family: