The Counterattack Begins

 

Friday morning saw something rare on the floor of the United States Senate. It was badly needed for the sake of the American people and — like most good deeds — will probably not go unpunished if the GOP leadership, leftist media, and Beltway insiders. In fact, the reprisals began almost immediately.

Sen. Ted Cruz took the floor to call out not just Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, but the whole system that’s used to insulate Congress from the will of the people. In this specific case, it dealt with the effort to end the Export/Import Bank, a relic of the New Deal which uses billions of public dollars to ensure financing for such shoestring operations as Boeing and General Electric. It’s corporate welfare and crony capitalism at its worst and should have died a well-deserved death long ago. It is kept alive by both parties as a source of taxpayer-funded power.

But the essence of Cruz’s words were about the abandonment of conservative principles by the leadership of the GOP. This specific case might have been about Mitch McConnell lying to Republican senators as a deal to keep the EX/IM Bank alive and the legislative trick used to do it, but the thrust of the charge is about betrayal of the voters who have spoken loud and clear on a number of issues.

Cruz laid out the exact details of each step in the McConnell deception with the skill of a nation college debate champion or a precise litigator who had argued nine cases before the Supreme Court and won them all (which he just happens to be). Those who rely on the network or cable news will not get the detail of his exacting and condemning, but they are clear.

89db86af-25a4-3eb1-b68a-db9f1fd76eb4Only days later, the House of Representatives saw another act of political courage to address the same lack of principled will by the established GOP elite. This time Rep. Mark Meadows from the 11th District of North Carolina introduced a resolution to declare the position of Speaker of the House to be vacant, creating an opportunity to replace John Boehner.

On the floor of the House, Meadows outlined a point-by-point list of the Boehner failures of both leadership and purpose. The GOP leadership in both houses has funded the Obama agenda while undermining the constitutional power of the Congress. Nothing has been done to contain the spending that assures our children of bankrupt future. Immigration enforcement, repeal of ObamaCare, control of nation spending, and national security comprised the basis for two huge election cycles for the GOP which gave them control of both houses.

What both Cruz and Meadows has done is publicly “out” the elite of the party for their lack of real opposition to the Obama agenda, the very basis for their being in Congress to begin with is a lie.

Regardless of your personal choice for any office, the thrust of what has to happen within the Republican Party is to leap back to the Reagan concept of “bold colors.” We do not need to consider it. We must leap toward it and embrace it. Too many of these get-along types have already taken us down the road too far for anything but a principled, all-out effort to save our children from what the Founders feared.

The media knives are already out for Cruz and Meadows. That includes a great deal of what is deemed “conservative” writers who are — for the most part — too loyal to and comfortable with the Beltway of doing things. Cruz and Meadows will find slim support in either house.

A great deal of what establishment of either party does is to force compliance and silence with party money and bullying in regard to the perks of the Congress, which they control. Both McConnell and Boehner have threatened and bullied with committee appointment and access to the legislative process. Even those who are — in spirit — agreed with Cruz and Meadows know that to publicly stand with them is to lose in regard to access to power and party money.

But an important step to restore the vision of self-government and making it work again is to publicly acknowledge that the present the leadership of the GOP stands in our way. They actively oppose conservatives while voicing their causes. This is little different from the left who have done so much to destroy that vision and practice while proclaiming the very values they destroy.

Does anyone doubt that if the Senate had 60 members like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee and House had 270 Mark Meadows that we would have fought a much better fight the last six years and actually have done some of the things promised?

The answer for our children’s future is not with a political party which has long ago committed itself more to social utopianism than to self-government. But the answer is not the Republican Party either. The answer is conservatism.

The answer is returning to a vision of responsible self-government protecting individual rights. Self-government requires citizens, not those who see elective office as a lifetime career path. It is citizens who must be the force that drives the machine.

Both Cruz and Meadows took a step to bring the individual citizen back into the process. They will be pounded by the media, their fellow Republicans who will try and dismiss them publicly, and the elites of the Beltway. Most of those who agree with them will not strand with them publicly. It is the citizens’ role to let their voice be sent as loud and consistently as possible to the members of both houses that both these men have the support and appreciation of the “base” of the nation.

I will again state that this look behind the veil at the shabby way business is done should be a clear call for an Article Five approach to remove more power from the D.C. elites and place more of the emphasis on the people themselves. These two will be feeling the “heat” today and for a long time forward. What they have done is a “game-changer” for their careers in the GOP. They will pay a political price for it from the establishment. If they gain from the people themselves will have to be seen. But the real factor will be what we do now.

The retaliation that Cruz and Meadows will receive from the establishment and the media is predicable. But the most meaningful has to come from us. It has to start now.

There are 82 comments.

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  1. jetstream Inactive
    jetstream
    @jetstream

    Oh yeah, I’m with you. I’m so with you that I’m on the verge of thinking a Trump led third party could be the best antidote to the dangers of the GOP establishment vipers.

    • #1
  2. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    jetstream:Oh yeah, I’m with you. I’m so with you that I’m on the verge of thinking a Trump led third party could be the best antidote to the dangers of the GOP establishment vipers.

    Someone should have a YouTube video contest of fed up voters throwing shoes at cardboard cutouts of Boehner and McConnell doing their “not so fast, lets be reasonable” schtick. I wonder if they get the irony of laughing at Trump for how many times he’s been in and out of bankruptcy and their own spendaholic banana republic sideshow?

    • #2
  3. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Ole Summers: Does anyone doubt that if the Senate had 60 members like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee and House had 270 Mark Meadows that we would have fought a much better fight the last six years and actually have done some of the things promised?

    60 and 270 seats are interesting numbers to throw out, as they both represent near super majorities.  A more relevant question is this:  If the Senate had 55 of Ted Cruz, and the house had 247 Mark Meadows, would they have done some of the things promised?

    The answer is no.

    The best they could have done is shut down the government until the Republican party was utterly doomed at the polls in 2016.

    Furthermore, if every Republican were Ted Cruz, the Republicans would hold no more than 40 seats in the senate, as most of the rest of the country isn’t Texas.

    • #3
  4. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    jetstream:Oh yeah, I’m with you. I’m so with you that I’m on the verge of thinking a Trump led third party could be the best antidote to the dangers of the GOP establishment vipers.

    This, I think, should make you think again. It’s saying that Dems may be bad–& remember how evil the Left is!–but the GOP is our enemy! That’s a precipice you want to step back from, don’t you think?

    • #4
  5. jetstream Inactive
    jetstream
    @jetstream

    Pseud, the picture EJ has with his latest members post is chilling .. I didn’t even want to look at it. And Boehner needs more information about Planned Parenthood  .. the only information Boehner needs is to be successfully primaried.

    • #5
  6. MSJL Thatcher
    MSJL
    @MSJL

    Count me among me among the broadly dissatisfied with both the current GOP leadership in Congress and with Mr. Cruz.  As one of his constituents, I look forward to being able to vote for an alternative in the next primary.

    As baffled as I am over this whole issue of the Export-Import Bank – if ever there was a corporate welfare program to kill, this is it – I think Cruz is “all hat and no saddle”.  It became painfully clear during the government shutdown he so desperately wanted that he has no real idea about how to actually get anything done.

    As disgruntled as I am with Boehner and McConnell right now, I can’t say that I am going to get weepy over Cruz and Meadows.  They are publicly going after their leadership and they know exactly what the consequences of striking at the king and missing.

    • #6
  7. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    jetstream: t they could have done is shut down the government until the Republican party was utterly doomed at the polls in 2016. Furthermore, if every Republican were Ted Cruz, the Republicans would hold no more than 40 seats in the s

    They will eventually vote to defund planned parenthood, and the senate will fail as the dems will successfully filibuster.  Even if they didn’t, Obama would veto.

    You are pretending the Boehner is the obstruction to Planned Parenthood being defunded, when the obstacle is the democrats.

    • #7
  8. SPare Member
    SPare
    @SPare

    Look, this was a temper tantrum.  Maybe it was required, but it strikes me that this is a grandstanding event by a guy who hasn’t been able to convince his colleagues that his course of action would be superior.

    I agree wholeheartedly with what Ted Cruz is trying to achieve: bold colours, not pale pastels.  Also, I agree that the amount of work that needs to be done to reverse the truly staggering amount of damage that Obama has done to the body politic requires some actions that are beyond what we have been comfortable with in the past.

    However, a lot of this strikes me as being parallel to one of the key problems that Obama has had in pushing his agenda: he can deliver the speeches that rile up the base, but he persuades absolutely nobody who isn’t already on his side.  As an aside, if you think that Ted Cruz is right in his approach, almost by definition you are the base.

    A lot of people bring up Mike Lee in the same breath as Ted Cruz, which is interesting.  Nobody credibly believes that Mike Lee isn’t about as conservative as you’re ever going to find.  However, you also don’t see him engage in these same kind of slash and burn tactics.  Instead, I have been led to understand that he actually has a pretty good working relationship with McConnell.  That difference should be instructive.

    • #8
  9. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    jetstream:Pseud, the picture EJ has with his latest members post is chilling .. I didn’t even want to look at it. And Boehner needs more information about Planned Parenthood .. the only information Boehner needs is to be successfully primaried.

    How hard is it to craft this commercial:

    “We send troops overseas to die in foreign lands for lower rates of death and destruction than what goes on at Planned Parenthood in our own country every year.”

    • #9
  10. Mike H Coolidge
    Mike H
    @MikeH

    What a cute fantasy. Let me know how it turns out.

    • #10
  11. gts109 Member
    gts109
    @gts109

    Aren’t there like 70 Senators who favor Ex-Im?

    • #11
  12. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    I agree about the fact that croniism and pork are both horrible and flatly unacceptable practices that voters should be given the opportunity to reject. That is the stuff of pelosi and Reid. But I also agree with Frank. I’d rather have a squishy Republican in a blue state than any democrat anywhere.

    • #12
  13. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Ryan M:I agree about the fact that croniism and pork are both horrible and flatly unacceptable practices that voters should be given the opportunity to reject.That is the stuff of pelosi and Reid. But I also agree with Frank. I’d rather have a squishy Republican in a blue state than any democrat anywhere.

    There’s a reasonable partisan.

    I don’t think pork is such a bad thing, though. People are not all that moral…

    • #13
  14. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    MSJL: Cruz is “all hat and no saddle”.

    The phrase is “all hat and no cattle” by the by. And I highly doubt Cruz will be primaried, but if he is the challenger will probably lose big. I’m still amazed he beat Dewhurst.

    Final note: Cruz wasn’t sent to the Senate to “get stuff done”. He was sent there to put the breaks on the spendaholics calling themselves small government conservatives.

    His election should have terrified the moderate-left Republicans and it still hasn’t sunk in with them based on the Ex-Im amendment vote.

    • #14
  15. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Austin Murrey: His election should have terrified the moderate-left Republicans and it still hasn’t sunk in with them based on the Ex-Im amendment vote.

    Why?  Does his vote get counted more times than the other senators?

    • #15
  16. user_966256 Member
    user_966256
    @BobThompson

    All this tells me that conservatives need to continue working to elect conservatives to the legislature in Washington.

    • #16
  17. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Bob Thompson:All this tells me that conservatives need to continue working to elect conservatives to the legislature in Washington.

    I think he’s got it.  I think he’s got it.

    Election are indeed the key to governance.  Cruz melting down on the senate floor is less effective.

    • #17
  18. Misthiocracy Member
    Misthiocracy
    @Misthiocracy

    < devil’s advocate mode = on >

    The Ex/Im Bank has existed since 1934.

    If allowing it to continue in 2015 is evidence that the Republican Party has abandoned conservative values, then what about the other fifteen times it was reauthorized, in 1947, 1951, 1957, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1974, 1978, 1983, 1986, 1992, 1997, 2002, 2006, and 2012?

    < devil’s advocate mode = off >

    • #18
  19. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Frank Soto:

    Austin Murrey: His election should have terrified the moderate-left Republicans and it still hasn’t sunk in with them based on the Ex-Im amendment vote.

    Why? Does his vote counted more times than the other senators?

    No, but he’s the sheriff. Comprende?

    • #19
  20. Autistic License Thatcher
    Autistic License
    @AutisticLicense

    OK, so if our Senators started actually proposing stuff we and they believed in, and they failed, would we be any worse off?

    • #20
  21. MSJL Thatcher
    MSJL
    @MSJL

    Austin Murrey:

    MSJL: Cruz is “all hat and no saddle”.

    You can tell I’m a transplant.  And you are probably right about the primary, although I must say that I was one of those voting in the primary for Cruz because I found Dewhurst to be an Austin GOP apparatchik.

    All the same, if he was sent to DC “to put the breaks on the spendaholics calling themselves small government conservatives” he seems to be singularly ineffective at influencing anyone else to go along with him.

    He seems very willing and able to stomp his feet and create a cloud of dust, but he does so in a way that gets the base riled up with no place to go.

    I may be painfully naïve but I continue to vote for people that I think may actually be capable to doing something.  And not just at the federal level.  Perry’s accomplishments at governor may hinge on keeping Austin on a leash, but having done business with state agencies I discovered that they are as incompetent, arrogant, and arbitrary as any in DC.  One reason I was luke warm on Dewhurst and Perry is because they simply didn’t take on that culture or seriously restructure the government despite running the place for a decade.

    At the end of the day, the only thing Cruz seems effective at is getting attention.  He doesn’t do anything with that attention.  But he gets a lot of attention.  My patience has worn out.

    • #21
  22. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    The difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats will break procedure and do anything to get things done while Republicans hide behind procedure and look for any excuse to why things can’t get done.  It does not require a supermajority in both houses and the presidency to get things done.

    • #22
  23. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Matt Walsh distills it for us knuckle draggers

    • #23
  24. gts109 Member
    gts109
    @gts109

    Well, it certainly requires the presidency and control of both houses of Congress to enact the type of major reforms that conservatives are demanding. And, I’m not talking about the small fry Ex-Im Bank.

    • #24
  25. MSJL Thatcher
    MSJL
    @MSJL

    Whiskey Sam:The difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats will break procedure and do anything to get things done while Republicans hide behind procedure and look for any excuse to why things can’t get done. It does not require a supermajority in both houses and the presidency to get things done.

    Pull the trigger on the nuclear option.  Republican Senators are going to have to put a stake in the heart of the modern filibuster and return it to the procedure when a Senator had to stand and speak, and then the chamber could vote with a simple majority.  One reason so much has been stymied over the last decades is the ability to invoke a 60-vote requirement to advance any item of legislation or nominee.

    • #25
  26. jetstream Inactive
    jetstream
    @jetstream

    gts109:Well, it certainly requires the presidency and control of both houses of Congress to enact the type of major reforms that conservatives are demanding. And, I’m not talking about the small fry Ex-Im Bank.

    It doesn’t require control of any branch of government to provide leadership, it just requires, you know, leadership.

    Since Newt Gingrich’s Contract With America, the GOP establishment has relentlessly demonstrated it’s poverty of conservative principles. They have become stealth allies to the statist progressives.

    • #26
  27. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    Frank Soto:

    Austin Murrey: His election should have terrified the moderate-left Republicans and it still hasn’t sunk in with them based on the Ex-Im amendment vote.

    Why? Does his vote get counted more times than the other senators?

    Because he won the primary in Texas despite being outspent more than 2 to 1 with a massive negative campaign by the favored candidate of the GOP, both in state and nationally. Which means there are voters, lots of motivated voters, who actively dislike the party’s chosen policies – and by extension the party. The lunacy of the O’Donnell candidacy in Delaware, the election of Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Mike Lee, the near-defeat of Thad Cochran overturned in Mississippi last cycle by the most underhanded smear campaign and rampant dishonesty seen on the state level outside of Illinois proves that out.

    Look, I get your point: if only we can continue to slavishly vote for the GOP we’ll get to talk about smaller government someday, when we reach that utopia of 67 Republican senators, 292 Republican congressmen and a Republican president who can somehow nominate 7 super-conservative Supreme Court justices.

    My point and the point of a lot of, shall we say, frustrated conservatives is that we’re tired of a bunch of careerist hacks who live full-time in Washington D.C. and deign to visit the voters in their districts when they can fit it in between vacations telling us we owe them our votes.

    I don’t owe the Republican party my vote, not in the face of a President Hillary Clinton, not in the face of a Democratic majority in the Senate and House, not in the face of anything. They have to earn my vote. As far as I’m concerned when Ted Cruz stands on the floor of the Senate calling out rank dishonesty and the theater act McConnell is putting on he’s earning my vote by being my senator. Not the GOP’s senator, mine – his constituent, the person he’s actually representing which seems to be lost on so many people for some reason.

    McConnell and Boehner seem to feel otherwise, that they can get my vote by being the least worst option. Well that’s gotten us a bloated, overreaching, corrupt ramshackle banana-republic bureaucracy running government by favor. And while that may work for some it doesn’t work for me, it doesn’t work for most Texas Republicans – you know, the people Cruz was sent to the Senate floor by – and given the suicide candidates that keep being nominated it doesn’t work for lots of other voters too.  So quit the smug condescension, and take the hint that we’re clubbing you with.

    • #27
  28. Pilli Inactive
    Pilli
    @Pilli

    Every single member of  Congress (both houses) intends to go there and “Do something.”

    Every one of them hears constituents screaming about a particular problem and telling them, “Do something.”

    The problem is that they actually do “Do something.”  And the government grows.  And grows.  And grows.

    The McConnells and Boehners have long ago forgotten the idea that the Government is usually not the answer.

    • #28
  29. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    gts109:Well, it certainly requires the presidency and control of both houses of Congress to enact the type of major reforms that conservatives are demanding. And, I’m not talking about the small fry Ex-Im Bank.

    We are being told we can’t even propose legislation let alone pass it because we don’t have full control.  That is excuse making.

    • #29
  30. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    MSJL:

    Whiskey Sam:The difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats will break procedure and do anything to get things done while Republicans hide behind procedure and look for any excuse to why things can’t get done. It does not require a supermajority in both houses and the presidency to get things done.

    Pull the trigger on the nuclear option. Republican Senators are going to have to put a stake in the heart of the modern filibuster and return it to the procedure when a Senator had to stand and speak, and then the chamber could vote with a simple majority. One reason so much has been stymied over the last decades is the ability to invoke a 60-vote requirement to advance any item of legislation or nominee.

    I am all in favor for this.  The 60-vote requirement is political cover for inactivity.

    • #30

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