- - Tuesday, October 17, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

At the Value Voters Summit last week, former Trump adviser and Breitbart Chairman Steve Bannon announced the obvious.  “Right now, it’s a season of war on the GOP establishment,” he told the conservative base.

For conservatives, this war is not Mr. Bannon’s war.  It is everyone’s war. 

Contrary to what the media and the Republican establishment think, Steve Bannon is not the cause of this war. He is just a symptom of the problem.

The problem is the Republican establishment has lied to the base and, in some cases, made war on the base.

Perhaps the Republicans have forgotten nine short years ago. The Democrats controlled the White House, the House of Representatives and had a super-majority in the Senate.

The tea party brought back the GOP and in an amazing show of ingratitude, the Republicans blew off the tea party base that put them back in power.

It was bad enough that the Republicans refused to keep the promises they ran on, but even worse; the Republican refused to protect the real Americans abused by the IRS. In 2013, the IRS targeting scandal became public knowledge. What is rarely reported is that Lois Lerner, the IRS executive who should be in prison today, was conspiring with leftist activists at the Department of Justice to prosecute conservative activists for the crime of being conservative.

A few Republicans did stand up for the tea party. While Texas Congressman Kevin Brady and Illinois Congressman Peter Roskam fought the IRS to try and protect the Tea Part and conservatives, most did not. Current IRS Commissioner John Koskinen obstructed Congress, hid information from the public, and did everything in his power to protect Ms. Lerner and the others who abused real Americans. The Republican Congress could not even impeach him.

Now, nine months into the Trump administration, the base is furious. Nothing has happened. Despite an alleged majority in both houses of Congress, none of the major objectives of the Trump administration are reaching his desk for signature.  Obamacare has not been repealed. There is no tax reform. The wall is not being built. Spending is not being cut.

The base is furious and with good reason.

In 2009, the tea party emerged as a leaderless movement.  That turned out to be both a strength and a weakness.  Without a definitive leader, the movement had its limitations. 

Mr. Bannon’s war is the latest iteration of the tea party movement. The Democrats paid the price the last time the Tea Party movement flexed its muscles. 

Now, the Republicans are on the chopping block.

For Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the future does not look good. To get support from conservatives, there is one single litmus test. As Steve Bannon told his potential Republican primary targets in the Senate, “you can come to a stick, a microphone, and say I’m not going to vote for Mitch McConnell as majority leader.”

2018 is coming and it will be bloody. Republicans have a choice. They can honor the promises they made the base or they can be voted out of office. There is a new wave of Republicans coming to Washington in 2018.

And unlike the majority of Republicans in Washington now, these guys really do want to drain the swamp.


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