I see is all the time. Supporters of Establishment candidates complain that their opponents are establishment, too. We saw it in the Missouri 2nd District. We see in the GOP Presidential primary. The last refuge of the Establishment’s candidates is to spread the pain of the Establishment label.
What many people don’t get is what the Establishment label actually means. It’s time everyone understood this.
The Establishment’s candidate is the candidate the Establishment chooses for us.
Got that? Please repeat it. Say it out loud. Write it down if you have to. Just don’t forget it. If it helps, add an apostrophe-s to Establishment, as in “Mitt Romney is the Establishment’s candidate.”
Remember the Frank Capra movie, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington? Mr. Smith was the Establishment’s appointment to the US Senate. (In that case, the Establishment chose the wrong guy for their own narrow interests.) Indeed, the Establishment’s candidate might be as un-establishment or anti-establishment as you can get.
Everyone who works with, for, on behalf of an established political party is part of the establishment. For that matter, anyone who votes in a primary in which he must choose a party’s ballot joins the establishment. Every candidate who runs as a Republican or as a Democrat is a member of the establishment. Libertarian candidate? Libertarian establishment.
Simply running for a party’s nomination does not make one the Establishment’s candidate, though. Nor does having been an office holder. Or an appointee. The Establishment’s candidate one year can be the Establishment’s enemy in another election.
When people reject the Establishment’s candidates, they’re not rejecting party affiliation; they’re rejecting political elites telling them whom to vote for.
If you reject government telling you how to live, you should reject a Party telling you how to vote.