Jim Geraghty fears that "the disappointment of 2012 persuaded a lot of conservatives that their efforts don't make a difference," which he says may become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I'm sure thousands of conservatives will explain to the National Review writer exactly why conservatives feel that way. And I'm going to add my voice to the chorus.
First, the 2012 election was a huge disappointment, but that in itself isn't what has discouraged the conservatives I know. We aren't disenchanted because the Democrats win some. We're frustrated that even when we win, Republicans don't move the needle.
Putting a Republican in office rather than a Democrat is basically replacing a virulent, malignant tumor with a slightly less malignant tumor. It slows the disease, but it's still fatal. Even when we win, we lose.
Spending slows slightly and expenditures are re-adjusted, but enormous deficits remain. I have little faith that if Republicans somehow manage to win the Senate and maintain the House that they will do what is necessary to rein in Obama's relentless overstep of Presidential authority.
As a Kansan, it is extraordinarily frustrating to me that our federal legislators, arguably some of the most conservative in the nation, will vote once again to retain John Boehner as speaker.
Boehner, the orange for brains, intends to support President Obama's plans for amnesty. The House Speaker says he'll only support some form of amnesty if the President agrees to shut down the border, but anyone who hasn't damaged one too many brain cells in a tanning bed knows that the President is highly unlikely to do any such thing. Obama enforces the parts of laws that he likes and completely ignores the parts he doesn't -- or he just changes them on the fly.
Members of the House theoretically hold the purse strings. Already, the Republican majority could have stopped the flow of federal dollars to Obamacare, but nope. They don't even have the political will to fight a wildly unpopular program that passed with the bare minimum of votes from only one side of the aisle. The American people -- not just conservatives -- hate it, but our jelly-fish House Republicans tremble in fear that Obama will say something not-nice about them. Um. He does that everyday. At a minimum they could least score a point in return for the bashing.
It's probably not appropriate to bash our federal legislators right before an election, but I would sincerely like to know which members of the Kansas delegation are going to support Boehner for speaker. (Hint: 75 percent of them will without question.)
If Republicans take the Senate, the same question goes for the Kansas Senate delegation. Will they support Mitch McConnell for majority leader, assuming McConnell pulls his head out of the dark pit of his behind in time to win re-election?
I think it's a safe assumption that McConnell will receive the votes of both Sen. Pat Roberts and Sen. Jerry Moran.
McConnell is an awful, horrid human. (This is the very worst insult I can lob at anyone. There are lots of good people with whom I disagree. That's not McConnell. He's disgusts me.)
Anyway, McConnell, brags about being "with" Joe Biden. He's campaigning as the penultimate insider. McConnell is a porker who, along with his wife, a former Secretary of Labor, earned $110 million in earmarks. In short, he's human garbage that smells only slightly less offensive than Sen. Harry Reid. (And there rests the sole political statement of Orman's with which I agree.)
Even in Kansas itself, we're dealing with a somewhat tepid Republican Establishment that does an embarrassing amount of pandering to liberals.
We have a conservative legislature and a conservative governor and the best we can do is a sliver of income tax cuts balanced with a sales tax increase.
And don't even get me started on education policy. We've seen limited moves toward more local control -- which really means just shifting some school funding authority from the state to the locals -- no actual policy or actual educational programming shifts. We've essentially given local school boards more opportunity to increase property taxes. Fine, I guess.
In the realm of policy, Brownback is advocating for MORE public education -- not less. His all-day kindergarten proposal is maddening.
Gov. Brownback, you should take note, that despite your somewhat liberal approach to education -- MORE money, MORE children under the auspice of the education establishment -- the media and liberals STILL call you anti-education. If you're going to pander, maybe you should pander to your base.
Here's what that looks like: Use your crazy, half-cocked David Kensinger and friends to advocate for things like school choice instead of all-day kindergarten and sales tax increases. How 'bout that?
Our legislature is woefully terrified of the dramatic changes that must be made if we're to save the culture. We need to change the way our judges are appointed. We need to make serious changes to the school finance formula. We probably need to restructure or at least re-examine the power our State School Board has over curriculum. (That's what probably needs to happen to defeat Common Core). And we desperately need to slow our roll where spending is concerned. The tax cuts are awesome, but they need to be paired with spending cuts.
None of those things is going to be easy, but if not in 2010 or 2012 with a conservative legislature, a conservative governor and a political wind blowing decidedly right -- then when?
If you're a conservative who has invested blood, sweat, tears and cold hard cash to get these people elected only to see them move hard left the second their office is secured, it seems like a waste of time and resources to even bother.
Grassroots conservatives have been bailing water over the sides of the Titanic that is the U.S. for many years. Our arms are tired, and the water continues to rise. Like many conservatives, I'm beginning to feel as if I should put down my bucket and enjoy the soothing music in the waning moments of liberty.