One thing is blatantly obvious about this wild campaign season of 2016. The establishment GOP is living in a parallel universe, a self-constructed reality completely divorced from the way the average American lives.
It simply doesn’t matter to them that 62 percent of Republicans report feeling “betrayed” by their party (Fox News), or that only 23 percent of GOP voters feel satisfied by the GOP leadership’s performance, with 72 percent dissatisfied. (NBC/WSJ Poll)
The people don’t know what’s good for them, the establishment reasons. Plus, it’s unfair to think we haven’t gotten anything done when Republicans lack the Senate seats to override Obama’s veto.
After Rep. John Boehner of Ohio announced his coming resignation as speaker, one would think the GOP would take a moment to reflect on how things got so off course. But no sir, instead it’s more of the same, only worse. Rather than acknowledge where they’ve gone wrong and attempt to build bridges to conservatives, Boehner and his allies are going back on the attack. People who criticize the Capitol Hill Old Boys’ Club are “false prophets” with bad motives who have “unrealistic” expectations, Boehner said Sunday during an appearance of CBS’ Face the Nation.
“There are people out there spreading noise about how much can get done,” he charged.
If only Boehner had attacked the Obama agenda as harshly as he attacked conservative grassroots. If only he was as afraid of conservative House members as he is of shutting the government down.
Perhaps the clearest sign that Republicans refuse to see the writing on the wall is the recent ubiquity of former U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor. Who better to deliver the Boehner post-mortem in print and on cable than the guy who was so out of touch he didn’t see his own historic primary loss coming? Is it no wonder that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has the lowest favorability rating of any GOP presidential candidate running with Cantor as chairman of his Virginia campaign?
Appearing on MSNBC Monday, Cantor expressed for the establishment its unwillingness to press the people’s agenda.
“When we gained the majority, we were about stopping the president because it was counter to what we believed,” Cantor said. “Somewhere, that turned into, we had to enact a new agenda. There is a Constitution, you need two-thirds of Congress, you have to have the White House.”
Grassroots conservatives attending the Values Voters Summit were literally whooping and hollerin’ over the Boehner announcement.
Grassroots conservatives attending the Values Voters Summit were literally whooping and hollerin’ over the Boehner announcement. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio smartly responded by saying “it’s time to turn the page.”
But not establishment fave and Boehner pal Jeb, who seemed wistful over the speaker’s exit.
“I admire John Boehner greatly,” Bush said on Fox News Sunday. “He’s a great public servant … I think people are going to miss him in the long run, because he’s a — he’s a person that is focused on solving problems.”
Ohio Gov. John Kasich struck a similar chord on Boehner. Only Texas Sen. Ted Cruz knew how to read GOP base. Noting Boehner resigned when Values Voters Summit attendees were in Washington, Cruz gleefully quipped, “My only request, is, can you come more often?”
The true-blue conservative believers who think Boehner’s departure will be good for conservatives, maybe even usher into leadership a Tea Party conservative, just haven’t been around long enough. Conservatives will only stop being Charlie Brown to the establishment’s football-snatching Lucy when we stop playing their game.
If the establishment refuses to learn, then they need to be replaced one after another. Until then, conservatives can still dream of a Speaker Trey Gowdy and Senate Majority Leader Jeff Sessions.