House Democrats are ready to revolt against Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., if party leadership fails to deliver for the Democrats in the 2018 midterms. But Republicans? Republicans plan on sticking with the same failed leadership if they lose in the midterms.
Expectations from GOP lawmakers who spoke to The Hill Tuesday show that if Republicans blow their majority in November, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., is in a good position to take the number one GOP leadership spot. It all hinges on whether or not Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., leaves Congress after the election.
“Hopefully in November, we’re talking about a third term for Speaker Ryan,” one House Republican told the Hill. “But if that’s not the case, I think Kevin’s the guy, and that comes from a more conservative member.”
Why is Kevin “the guy?” According to The Hill, if Republicans go back to being a minority party, McCarthy would need just a majority of the GOP conference to secure the minority leader job. His closest competition might be the number three Republican, Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., but the Republicans who spoke under condition of anonymity say that while Scalise could win the speaker job if Ryan leaves and the GOP keeps its majority, it’s “McCathy’s to lose” in the minority. Many Republicans are in McCarthy’s debt after he’s crisscrossed the nation fundraising in their districts. The favors he’s owed, plus his good relationship with the president, would likely be enough to head off a challenge from a more conservative Republican.
“I think there will be a play from the right. But will it be the Freedom Caucus 30 or will it be a larger movement? And would Scalise lead it? I don’t know,” said another GOP lawmaker. “But if McCarthy shows strength and there’s no opening, then I think McCarthy stays on as leader.”
Keeping the current GOP leadership in the House after losing the majority under said leadership would be dumb. Really, really, dumb.
Why are Republicans in a position where they could lose their House majority in the first place? Because when the failures of Obamacare were the pressing issue on the minds of most Americans, Republican leaders put forward their own RINOcare bill that broke their promise to repeal Obamacare. Because when it came time to cut taxes, bungled messaging from House Republicans and a flawed bill convinced too many Americans that their taxes were going up. Because when it comes to advancing the Trump immigration agenda and securing the border, leaders like McCarthy are dragging their feet at the behest of open-borders, big-agriculture businesses.
Republicans aren’t keeping their promises to voters.
What is the purpose of Republican leadership? The idea is to lead, right? The point is to make sure that Republicans make their best effort to persuade voters to vote for the GOP — and then keep the promises they make to voters after they are elected. And the goal is to keep getting elected, right?
Well, if Republicans aren’t keeping the promises they made to voters, and if voters punish them for it in 2018, how could it possibly make sense to keep the same leadership team if the party fails under that leadership?
If Republicans lose their House majority, they should drop McCarthy along with the entire leadership team and start from scratch, rebuilding the the conservative agenda that put them in power in the first place.
Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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