In recent days there has been a huge debate breaking out between conservatives who disagree over the right path forward in the debt limit debate. That is a separate discussion which I won’t engage in here, but it has put many conservatives who I strongly respect and usually agree with on different sides of an issue. Most of us understand that this is a disagreement over strategy, not principal (although it is an important one to debate). However, some of us have become very frustrated by the name calling and distortion that has dominated the last few days. Usually this tactic is limited to Liberals, but I have seen it extensively on our side this week. A lot of these insults are directed at John Boehner and the House Republicans for supposedly caving with their new plan. I understand part of the strategy is to keep the pressure on to force the best deal possible, but not everyone reading these debates understand that. Some of the Republicans that would fit into the “caving” group this week include Paul Ryan and Allen West, two of our best political figures. These insults could cost some great Republicans very real votes and elections in 2012. Afterwards, when Liberal Democrats are in power and our country is in the crapper, who are we going to blame? I have noticed it has now become almost accepted in some circles that John Boehner is somehow not a conservative. This assertion has no credibility in facts or reality. While his rhetoric might not always be as fiery as even I would like, Boehner is the one who has been going to the White House daily telling the president he will not give in on tax raises or fake cuts. John Boehner became Speaker of The House in 2011. Despite the 2010 election being historic, we only control ½ of the legislature and none of the executive branch. Yet some are demanding that Boehner act like we have super majorities and the presidency. This anti-Republican paranoia is dividing us for no reason and ensuring continued Liberal success. I am not saying we cannot criticize or disagree, but at the end of the day we have to be able to distinguish our enemies and allies. In reality, John Boehner has been one of the most effective congressional leaders in our history. In just a short period, John Boehner and the House Republicans have done the following things:
- Passed the Ryan Budget
- Passed CCBA
- Voted to limit funding for Planned Parenthood
- Banned earmarks
- Passed the first real budget cuts since the 1990’s
- Passed a bill to stop EPA regulation of Green House emissions
- Repealed Obamacare
- Prevented Democrats from passing huge tax increases that would have further hindered our economy.
Many of these votes got unanimous support from the House Republicans. How many Speakers could consistently deliver that? Of course many of them meant very little in real world results because Obama controls the WH and Democrats control the Senate. Similarly, any bill that we pass now will likely not have most of the things that we desire. However, these actions by the House Republicans clearly highlight the path forward after 2012 and they took political courage.
The House Republicans are facing off against a Democratic Senate and the most left wing president in American history on a daily basis. They are not only fighting them at a huge disadvantage and with a media that has an evident bias, but they are actually winning by any standard. Are they perfect or have they accomplished everything I want them too? Of course not. However, they have accomplished a lot and for that they deserve praise and not scorn. Republicans like Paul Ryan have taken great political risks in order to do what is right and put the country first and it’s time we start rewarding them for it. The grass roots movements are vital to defining and expanding conservatism, but the Republicans that are now in control in Washington (at least in the house) are our friends and not our enemies. That is not to diminish the people who are opposing the current plan, who are also doing vital work, but I for one salute Speaker Boehner, Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Allen West and others for fighting for our country’s future. They truly are heroes of the conservative movement.