Egos And Infighting: The GOP’s Biggest Opponent In November
Stars are aligning for a big Republican victory this November — solidifying and expanding the GOP’s majority in the House and perhaps gaining one in the Senate. This is a best-case scenario, and any majority in the Senate would be a slim one. But the importance of removing Harry Reid as majority leader cannot be overstated. That’s why Democrats will pull every dirty trick in their deep bag to hold the Senate, and sadly many Republicans will help them in that quest.
President Obama will have two years left to wreak havoc on the country after the next election, but he can only throw stones into the river of time, not permanently change its flow. The ripples from his stones will have consequences, but they will be nothing compared to the lasting damage he can do with more Supreme Court appointments. Obamacare, oppressive EPA regulations, executive orders, all of it can be changed or repealed, but not with a more activist progressive Supreme Court.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is 81 and suffering from pancreatic cancer. So far, she’s resisted progressives’ calls for her to retire so the president can replace her with a younger reliable vote, but no one knows if that will continue. Justice Anthony Kennedy is the key swing vote on the court right now. He’s 77 and in seemingly good health. But he’s also an unreliable vote for the Constitution. If they, or any of the other justices could be replaced by a younger, unchecked Obama appointee, the chances they’d bastardize the court’s rulings to permanently enshrine unconstitutional unilateral presidential actions rises exponentially.
Harry Reid spared SCOTUS nominees when he changed the Senate filibuster rules, but he could close that loop quickly. The Supreme Court is key and it’s their goal. Pack it with progressives, particularly young ones with decades to serve, and it’s game over.
That’s what’s at stake.
With the ability to “fundamentally transform” the country on the line, you’d think Republicans could keep their eyes on the goal and put aside egos and petty in-fighting. Contentious primaries — even over-the-top nasty ones — are an unfortunate reality in politics. But once the winner is declared, the runners shouldn’t fight on the podium.
The cause of liberty is bigger than any one candidate, no matter what. In Mississippi, Thad Cochran won the Republican primary. Would it be better if hadn’t? Absolutely. But wishes don’t win elections, votes do, and he got more. Chris McDaniel is understandably upset, but he lost. How he lost can and should be studied. It should not be the basis for a fight that can’t be won that puts the general election at risk.
When Eric Cantor lost he was, understandably, upset. What he didn’t do was cry foul, threaten to sue and undercut the validity of David Brat’s victory in an attempt to harm his chances in the general election. For all his faults, and Cantor has many, he’s gotten out of the way.
It’s the lesson of Ronald Reagan in 1976, and it’s a lesson McDaniel should emulate.
Reagan mounted an insurgent campaign to win the nomination away from President Ford. He came close, but he lost. Reagan could have withheld support, could have raised holy hell, but he didn’t. He tried, he lost, he accepted it. He moved on and won the nomination and the presidency four years later.
Reagan’s smart, unemotional reaction to the disappointing events of 1976 advanced the cause of conservatism when he easily could have gone the other way.
The unselfishness exhibited by Reagan is a rare commodity in the time of Kardashians. And, unfortunately, the Republican Party is not immune to the viral entitlement strain worming its way through the culture nowadays. And the selfie-virus, if not held in check, will be what turns probable victory into certain defeat come November.
You may not like the candidate who won a particularly primary. You may even hate them. But they’re infinitely better than any Democrat, particularly in the Senate, because any Democrat in the Senate will vote to retain Harry Reid as majority leader. And Harry Reid as majority leader means unfettered access to lifetime judicial appointments for activist progressive judges, up to and including the Supreme Court. If the courts are lost for a generation, no election will matter.
The internal fighting, jockeying for position and ideological purges are all necessary, and I’m down for every bit of it…just not until progressivism is vanquished. The Tea Party and the establishment both need to heed this concept or risk neither getting what they want (which, by the way, has significant overlap).
The future prospects of individual liberty hinge on whether the various factions of the Republican/conservative/libertarian movements can keep their circular firing squad powder dry long enough to win an election that couldn’t be better situated to be a tap-in putt. Between now and November we need to hope they have something in their bag other than a wedge.
Derek Hunter is Washington, DC based writer, radio host and political strategist.: You can also stalk his thoughts 140 characters at a time on Twitter.