On Tuesday scores of Republicans deserted the leadership over the new CR and its absurd claim of real cuts –you know, the sort that don’t bleed anyone. The leadership rushed forward with a fake bill to defund NPR that has no chance to pass the Senate and which is quite obviously intended as a sop to the fly-over voters who are easily fooled by the Beltway sharpies. More gimmicks no doubt are right around the corner as the GOP maneuvers to avoid anything that the MSM might label a government shutdown and criticize the Republicans for.
The House GOP is truly fighting the last war, not realizing that the Clinton-Gingrich battle of 1995 might as well have occurred in 1895 so much have circumstances changed.
The U.S. is spending $3,600 billion a year, with $1,600 billion of it borrowed. The House GOP is quivering at the prospect of a showdown over forcing a cut of $6o of the $3,600 billion!
The House members return to their districts next week, and they deserve the scorn they will receive. They elected and empowered the leadership, and they have allowed the leadership to imperil all they worked for via timidity and Beltway politics, a monumentally incompetent communications strategy, and a “I got my chairmanship back!” mentality that quickly saw the old bulls take back the perks and push the new members aside with promises of reform down the road.
It has been a complete fiasco to date, and threatens to get worse. Jim Jordan the chair of the Republican Study Committee has a caucus of 177 members. He should use it to fashion and enforce demands. It is very hard to change leadership in the middle of a Session, but these freshmen members must know their jobs are on the line and the strategy adopted by the leadership is alienating voters and especially their volunteers and contributors, and making them look like fools or incompetents.
They don't have to win, but they do have to at least try to win. Thus far they haven't, and the political toll is immense.