Sen. Mitch McConnell R-KY on Thursday urged conservatives to stick to their principles and realize that battles over issues such as reform for health care or campaign finance required a long-term, lifetime commitment effort to get right.

McConnell, speaking to activists at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington on Thursday, said that like the Supreme Court battle over campaign finance which started about a decade ago, and the nearly year-old effort to repeal last year's landmark health care reform law, such efforts required years of perseverance.

These battles last longer than a season and an election cycle. They last a lifetime, he said.

The comments came just a month into a new session of Congress, with the legislature split along party lines. The House of Representatives and Senate are being led by Republicans and Democrats, respectively.

McConnell said he believed that what finally prompted Americans to elect Republicans overwhelmingly in last year's elections was the passage of the health care reform law. He said that Republicans would not stop until the law was defeated in the courts or until a President who would not veto the bill was elected.

I assure you we're just getting started, he said. He said once repealed, the law would be replaced with commonsense reforms.

He also said he would continue to bring up the record of those voting for the law.

We will not let the people who spent the last two years turning this country into France walk away from their record, McConnell said.

That's why we forced them to defend their vote on the healthcare bill and that's why I will keep talking about the havoc that this bill is wreaking on our economy and our health care system until the court overturns it or we have a President who repeals it, he added.

McConnell said Democrats were attempting to put the issue behind them.

I assure you it's very much ahead of them, McConnell said.