When the White House and Congress of the United States of America were controlled by Republicans, the nation found itself at war. It was a war not asked for by America, but one we were dragged into by terrorists who wished us dead. Some tried to blame America. Some claimed it was because of the cycle of poverty and violence our enemies suffered. They ignored facts. But George W. Bush kept us safe. His foreign policy was not perfect, but far better than the present blundering of Barack Obama.
Unfortunately, while George W. Bush focused on keeping us safe, his party waged war on thrift and small government domestically. Hiding behind war spending, the Republicans in Congress, with the President's blessing, destroyed any sense of reasonableness to the size and scope of the federal government. They passed Medicare Part D, expanding entitlements. They passed No Child Left Behind, expanding the federal government's incursion into state run public schools and setting the stage for Common Core. When the GOP, finally fat and corrupt with members of Congress being carted off to jail, was removed from control of Congress, the GOP continued. They helped pass TARP. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell called it one of the finest days ever in the history of the Senate. They passed the General Motors bail out.
When President Bush left office and Barack Obama came in, the GOP faltered. They, once back in control of the House, refused to do everything they said they would do to kill Obamacare. They caved and surrendered more often than the French in the face of mice. They started spending again. They held to sequestration until they had cover to let it go. They raised taxes hiding behind Paul Ryan's charm. And now, again, when the nation continues its fury about Obamacare, the Republicans plan to divide their own side with a fight over immigration.
In 2014, Republicans have a choice. They can stick with the team that, when in charge, brought us several trillion in national debt, No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, and then, out of power, collaborated with the Democrats on TARP, the GM bailout, and a host of other big spending programs. Or then can replace them in primaries.
This really is a choice. It is a choice because the party leaders who would be in charge of the Senate and House in 2015 are the very same men and women who did those things. The choice comes by your level of engagement in primaries. Many of the men and women who did these things, including Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, have challengers. The strongest message we can send — the choice we can make — is to choose new faces for the Republican Party.
No man is indispensable. No politician deserves re-election by virtue of incumbency. Now is the time to change and that change must come by you choosing to engage in primary fights against the men and women who have never learned the lessons of their past defeats. Now is the time to fund the challengers, pray for them, and support the organizations helping them.
The New York Times reports insurgent conservative groups are raising more money than the establishment. This is, to a degree, misleading. A good bit of the establishment money is spread out to make its fundraising look weaker than it is. Likewise, it can rely on the Chamber of Commerce and others. Additionally, it has the NRSC and NRCC, which are both trying to starve conservative groups of funding and outside help. But the signs are there that you are willing to engage.
You must keep it up.
Over the next several weeks I will be highlighting races and candidates to support. After the 2010 election, when conservatives sent a wave of "tea party" candidates to Congress, more than 70% of them started voting in lock step with their leadership. Some of those we have worked to replace. Others, now, must be replaced. And still other seats are open and we must fill them. We will never bat a thousand. We will occasionally back candidates who betray us. They are, after all, politicians. But if it were not for our efforts in 2010, we would not have Mike Lee or Rand Paul or Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio. We would not have Jim Bridenstine, Matt Salmon, Ted Yoho, Tim Huelskamp, Justin Amash, and others.
These candidates not only must be defended in 2014 as the Chamber of Commerce and Establishment allies work to defeat them, but other candidates must be supported and sent to Washington to help them. The conservatives need reinforcements.
You must choose to make a change. You must change the Republican Party to change Washington. You must change Washington to save America. This is your responsibility to history and to your family.