By Tim Baldwin
Speaker of the House, John Boehner, announced his resignation. For many Republicans, this is past due. The Republican Party has been seemingly disintegrating for lack of leadership and significant philosophical division. Boehner’s resignation will give Republicans an opportunity to repair itself.
The speaker holds tremendous power: he can keep bills from being heard or voted on; is able to pressure the executive branch to sign bills into law; and is instrumental in obtaining needed votes to pass a bill. In some ways, the speaker is able to give life or cause death to the promises our elected representatives gave to get elected.
Republicans are starving for a real leader. This is a large reason for Donald Trump’s success. No one is claiming that Trump is a far-right conservative, but he proclaims what most conservatives believe: we need more economic liberty and less government overreach and political corruption. More than that, he seems real. This is what people like and want.
If the House replaces Boehner with someone similar, many Republicans will be incensed, which will cause the anti-establishment movement to grow. This will help Trump and harm candidates like Jeb Bush. If a better choice is made, it will give credibility to the anti-establishment movement, which will also help Trump. Whatever happens with replacing Boehner, people like Trump are not going away.
By Joe Carbonari
The Republican Party has lost control of its sandbox. Anybody can get elected in their primaries. Those most extreme and active vote, the rest mostly don’t. This leads to otherwise extreme policies and practices to become acceptable. This is not conservative of America and its values. It is throwing America off-balance and into disarray. It is no way to lead the country, let alone the world.
What to do about it? Help the Republican Party, and the country, work this out. It will entail remembering that we all have a responsibility to help to make America work. It is the cost of liberty.
We need to let our friends know, respectfully, when we hear something egregiously unhelpful. Humor helps. Too many votes are cast, particularly in the primaries, that are largely reflexive, incompletely thought through. Talking politics is not politically incorrect. It is way to learn, to resolve, to move forward. Our country was founded on it. Our future depends on it. We are all conservatives in that sense. Let’s actually talk a bit and help each other solve some problems.
The Chinese are becoming increasingly competitive. Their hackers target us both militarily and economically. The Russians, the Iranians, and others, are capable, too. Cyber-attacks are real and are taking place. Some steal, some disrupt. All do harm. Other threats, nuclear, environmental, and economic are our daily fare. Politics matter. Think about it. Talk about it. It becomes our future.
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