- - Sunday, December 22, 2013

If Speaker of the House John A. Boehner is not too proud, he can quickly bring House members into unity by making lemonade out of the establishment’s myopic, perceived lemon of a government shutdown. How? Mr. Boehner can laud the principled stand taken by fellow Republicans to save the American people by delaying implementation of Obamacare, and at the same time exploit the recklessness of the Democrats who voted for the measure.

For us conservatives, the temporary loss of an ideal budget compromise in order to prevent another shutdown is the best course. All attention by conservatives should now be focused on the primaries to elect true House and Senate conservative candidates next fall. Then changes can begin to take effect.

First, we have to admit our own error in choosing flaky candidates who cost us control of the Senate. We must do a better job of vetting. At the same time, establishment Republicans need to admit that in some instances they have failed in vetting their elected members, some of whom have turned out to be sexual and financial deviants. This must not happen again.

Too many establishment Republicans have for decades been hand-in-hand with Democrats to produce business-as-usual, mutually beneficial pork, earmarks and special-interest corruption. This has created the current, massive debt and regulatory and tax burdens. Too many seek office as their career or as a fast door to a high-paying law firm or lobbying post. Electing majorities of such establishment, unprincipled Republicans will not prevent America’s decline into insolvency. In fact, these people are the problem.

Vetting by all must be deep and complete. Establishment Republicans and conservatives alike must be honest and clear-headed in the primaries in order to retake the Senate and slow down President Obama’s destructiveness until January 2017. Mr. Boehner and others need to stop slandering conservatives. They need to join with conservatives’ principles, eliminate the avenues of political corruption, and help turn this great nation around.

MICHAEL HERBERS
Silver Spring