Former Florida governor Jeb Bush, appearing Thursday on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” said that “of course” he would back Trump, should he emerge triumphant at next year’s GOP convention in Cleveland. “We need to be unified, we need to win,” Bush said. --The Washington Post, September 3, 2015
The Republican Establishment has exposed itself as a political disease willing to kill its host. Unless we seek treatment and remove the tumor first. Some ideas below.
Here are three symptoms of disease:
1. Uncontrollable Bleeding from Jeb Bush
Jeb Bush is flirting with breaking his pledge to support the Republican nominee for president. And the only consequences he's worried about are the consequences to Jeb Bush. America can go to hell as far as Jeb's concerned.
Let that sink in. The man who demanded Trump sign a pledge to support the Republican nominee will break the very same pledge if Trump is the nominee. Unless breaking the pledge hurts Jeb.
Got that, Republicans? "If you nominate Trump, we'll destroy our own party." Ace of Spades points out the blatant hypocrisy:
Thus the double-standard so many complain about: The Establishment tells the grassroots not to make demands, and to remain loyal to the party no matter how little of its agenda is pressed for, while the Establishment and the pampered corporate wing feel pretty damn comfortable serving up ultimatums and splitting from the party if their agenda isn't eagerly serviced.
For weeks, Jeb Bush has shouted, "Donald Trump is not a serious candidate." Really, Jeb? If Trump is not serious with 30 percent support, what does that make you with 3 percent?
Readers know that I have issues with Trump, but The Donald is at least 10 times more serious a candidate than Jeb Bush.
Jeb Bush has lost his mind.
2. The National Committee Suddenly Turned Dark
In a similar way, the Republican National Committee held secret meetings a few weeks ago in which the committee reportedly worked up plans to steal the convention away from Trump should he win the most delegates.
Mitch McConnell was present at the meeting, but he said nothing. He'll let the committee members do his dirty work.
The Republican National Committee has been radicalized for the establishment.
3. A Budget Deal to Eat Out Your Substance
And last we come to the Paul Ryan budget--a bloated, politically correct travesty designed to win favor with King Obama and Princess Pelosi. [Update: The GOP Budget drove conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly to endorse Donald Trump. And I'm not far behind.]
Conservatives complain that the Congressional Republicans refuse to stand up to Obama. They're wrong, of course. House and Senate Republicans will gladly fight the White House. They will risk a government shutdown. And they just proved it with this budget.
Establishment Republicans will shut down the government to protect their corporate overlords. They just won't risk any political capital for their hoi polloi constituents.
Corporatists wanted increased immigration and a lift on oil export ban. They got both.
Obama threatened to veto the oil export ban lift, but your friendly neighborhood Republican leaders stood up to the White House. If they hadn't, their sponsors might skip a $25,000 super PAC contribution or two, and no Establishment power-freak would risk that.
In the end, the Democrats got just about everything they wanted in the budget, as shown in this tweet:
Rep Israel on omnibus: We ended up with most of the good stuff in and most of the bad stuff out. And that's a victory.
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) December 18, 2015
The GOP also funded Planned Parenthood, stripped funding for the border fence, and fully funded Obamacare.
And every Missouri Republican voted for the budget or the rule or both. Every single one of them.
What To Do About It
Unlike the GOP candidates for president, none of us signed a loyalty pledge. So let's begin by refusing to support or vote for any member of Congress who voted for the Omnibus Budget. (You can see how they voted here.)
That means actively supporting a third-party candidate in the general election election next year if the incumbent wins the primary. Are you willing to do that?
It also means using leverage and making your leverage known.
In Navy bootcamp, our company commanders (now called Recruit Division Commanders) used leverage well. They put the burden on the recruits themselves. If one recruit screwed up, the whole company (or division) was punished.
The system worked. Fellow recruits could punish screw-ups in ways RDCs could not. And recruits had more eyes and ears looking for potential screw-ups than the RDCs had. Thus, many screw-ups were prevented.
One way for grassroots conservatives to apply leverage is to make a formal pledge and stick to it. Last year, I pledged to cast zero Republican votes in any race if Jeb Bush is the nominee.
My lone act of defiance means nothing. But one thousand people in Ann Wagner's district would. Ten thousand such pledges would cost several Republicans elections.
Loyalty Is Killing Us
Any conservative loyal to the GOP is disloyal to conservatism because the GOP is disloyal to conservatism. The GOP is loyal only to its sponsors: Wall Street, huge multi-national corporations, and large individual donors. Their sponsors have loyalty only to their own wealth. They are not ideological, but they pay for a lot of phony research designed to stimulate ideological passions.
For instance, three corporations--General Electric, Philips, and Sylvania-- stimulated the passions of environmentalists by sponsoring pseudo-science claiming compact fluorescent bulbs are better for the environment than incandescent bulbs. In fact, CFLs do up to 26 percent more damage to the environment (and to people) than incandescents, but CFLS were more profitable for GE. Environmentalists were stimulated by research to work against the planet to support GE's stockholders. Since GE does not pay federal taxes, profits are wonderful things.
So, I'll renew my pledge: if Jeb Bush is the GOP nominee, I will cast no Republican votes in November 2016. None. My little act of defiance may not do much, but I won't be feeding the Republican tumor.
You can have your say in the comments.