Last year, Senator Ron Johnson (HAFA Score 94) ran for a Leadership post (not because he wanted to be in Leadership but because he wanted to change it). Roy Blunt (HAFA Score 63) beat him. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (HAFA 76) had hand picked Senator Blunt. Even though McConnell pulled out all the stops to help Blunt, Johnson still got 22 Republican votes, which is a signal that nearly half of the Conference is not satisfied with the current strategy coming out of McConnell’s shop. Well it has gotten worse. Senate Republican Leadership staffers are now attacking Johnson either on behalf of leadership or because Senate GOP Leadership has lost control of their staff. Either way it’s bad, and Senators must be wondering about McConnell’s leadership skills.
After the leadership fight, instead of backing down, Johnson has voiced his displeasure with the lack of a coherent conservative strategy from McConnell’s office.In typical fashion though, rather than taking Johnson’s advice and developing a conservative strategy, Leadership retaliated last week with a cowardly hit piece on Johnson. The article contained quotes from a “senior GOP aide.” The aide was too gutless to be named, but my Hill sources say it is likely someone from McConnell’s office. The aide attacks Johnson for not “reaching out” enough to his colleagues despite getting 22 Senators to vote for him.
“While top Republican sources expressed exasperation at the internal turmoil in Johnson’s office, they also noted that the Wisconsin freshman has not been diligent in building relationships with other Senators within the Conference and has alienated himself by not reaching out more frequently to colleagues.“He’s an interesting case study of someone who has talked more than he has listened, lectured more than he has developed relationships with his colleagues, and now he’s having a tough time because of that behavior in advancing his policy goals,” one senior GOP aide said. “It’s kind of like watching a temper tantrum by a 2-year-old in the middle of the grocery store.”“The Senate is still about relationships, and he doesn’t seem to get that,” the aide continued.”
Seriously? Our nation is $15 trillion in debt, and they think he should be wasting time “building relationships” and “reaching out?”Ron Johnson did not come to Washington to “build relationships.” In fact, in September of 2010, just before his election, candidate Ron Johnson attended to a closed-door meeting of Republican Senators and told them point blank “I’m coming to join the fight, not the club.” Apparently he is doing just that. Good for him. This is why we need to elect Ted Cruz in Texas, Clark Durant in Michigan, Josh Mandel in Ohio, Richard Mourdock in Indiana, Mark Neumann in Wisconsin, and Don Stenberg in Nebraska so we can elect a real Republican leader who will fight with conservatives instead of against us.