WASHINGTON, September 30, 2017 — After nearly three decades shilling for the Republican Party, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh has finally seen the light.
Like many knee-jerk Republicans, Rush once believed any politician with a capital “R” behind his or her name was a “conservative.” But like the voters who gave Republicans control of both houses of Congress and the White House⏤and have yet to see GOP lawmakers fulfill their campaign promise to repeal Obamacare and reduce their tax burden⏤the scales have fallen from Limbaugh’s eyes. He told Fox News:
“I don’t think they’re conservative, and I don’t think they ever have been. Look, there isn’t much conservatism in the establishment, Republicans or Democrats. It’s basically people who are pro-government, pro-Washington, who think government in Washington is the center of the world.”
He reminded Fox viewers that GOP leaders “don’t want Trump to succeed with his agenda. They can’t afford that … If an outsider, with no prior political experience, can come in and fix messes that people have promised would be fixed for thirty years, how does that make them look? They can’t allow that to happen.”
But there are those who don’t quite see it that way. Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan, former speech writer for presidents Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush, says the survival of the two “great political parties” requires “bipartisanship⏤concrete achievements and progress. They have to work together and produce.”
“The biggest ‘party’ in America is those who call themselves independent,” says Noonan. “Gallup has the Democrats’ and Republicans’ favorability each at about 40%. Both parties are internally riven, warring and ideologically divided. Neither is as sure as it’s been in the past of its philosophical reason for being. Both have to prove they have a purpose. Otherwise, they will in time go down, and it may not take that long.”
Like a majority of intellectualoids within the conservative movement, Noonan does not see that the election of Donald Trump as president marked the beginning of the end of bipartisan Washington.
Contrary to Noonan’s assertions, bipartisan Washington has been flourishing for decades. Both political parties have spent the U.S. into a national debt surpassing $20 trillion and have, regardless of which party controls Congress, agreed to increase its debt ceiling and, with it, the sprawl of government power into our lives.
It is that bipartisan spirit which has driven so many Americans away from the sham that is our two-party system to become Independents, 48 percent of which voted for Trump last November.
Democrats passed Obamacare into law. Republicans work hard to preserve it.
It will be interesting to see how many “bipartisan” minded Republicans survive against their primary challengers in the months to come.
Judge Roy Moore’s stunning victory against the establishment GOP’s pick, Luther Strange, in last Tuesday’s special election in Alabama is a hopeful sign of things to come.
“Together, we can make America great,” said Moore in his victory speech. “We can support the president. Don’t let anybody in the press think that because he [Trump] supported my opponent that I do not support him and support his agenda. As long as it’s constitutional, as long as it advances our society, our culture, our country, I will be supportive.”
Trump would do well to make a clear break from the Republican leadership in Congress and actively campaign against Obamacare-loving incumbents in the 2018 GOP primaries. Their challengers are far more likely to “support him and support his agenda” than today’s crop of duplicitous incumbents.
And, more importantly, it will show Trump stands with Americans against Washington’s corrupt, bipartisan swamp.