When the TEA Party emerged in 2009 aided by millions of dollars from super-rich conservative businessmen such as the Koch brothers, America ceased its downturn and took a nose dive. The TEA Party’s platform of protecting the wealthy from increased taxes, and waging war against the working class and poor, signaled the end of the American dream for tens of millions of Americans. The arrival of this destructive group also offered a guarantee that eventually the GOP would implode. Two parties with opposing philosophies cannot exist under a single banner.
The first true sign of bipartisanship occurred a week ago. The Senate removed the codicil which would have defunded the President’s executive action regarding immigration from the funding bill for the Department of Homeland Security. Extremists, the TEA Party, threatened Speaker John Boehner with a move to ‘vacate the seat,’ removing him as Speaker if he accepted the Senate change. Boehner was supported by Democrats in the House and the Senate version was passed.
There continue to be rumors of a House revolt. Democrats, including some considered the most liberal, have indicated they would cast their vote for Boehner if he was challenged. This resulted in speculation that Boehner may be considering switching parties. A spokesman for the Speaker said that he has no intentions of leaving the Republican Party. He remains a proud conservative, and continues to have the support of most Republicans in the House.
In another departure from actions by GOP members in the last five years occurred during the recent CPAC. Grover Norquist represents the wealthiest one-percent of Americans. He lobbied members of the TEA Party and some other Republicans to sign a pledge to never raise taxes. Jeb Bush refused to sign such a pledge.
Here’s the reality; Americans need a tax increase. Programs of austerity have failed the working class and poor. Taxes for both individuals and corporations in the United States are among the lowest in the free world. The vast majority of Americans fall into the lower middle class and below; they would not be affected by a tax increase. Norquist is acting in an un-American fashion; he doesn’t care about the majority of our nation’s people. He has his own agenda.
Finally, Republican leadership has stated that it must address voting blocks which were previously ignored. The nation is moving towards a more racially diverse nation, and women have become a force. Once again, actions speak louder than words.
Extremist groups once again were allowed to participate at the CPAC last week. Among them were the United Kingdom Independence Party. Its leader, Nigel Farage, spoke to attendees. He said that America must discourage immigration and multiculturalism. He believes that the Judeo-Christian ethic must be protected at all costs.
The Chicagoland Friends of American Renaissance had a booth at the Conference. They also would eliminate immigration. By the way, it is also a white supremacist group.
Senator Jeff Sessions held an impromptu news conference organized by Breitbart Media. He planned to denounce the President’s executive order which would give nearly five million illegal residents a path to legal status. In attendance were NumbersUSA, an anti-immigration group; Federation for American Immigration Reform, an immigration hate group; and representatives of the Center for Security Policy, an anti-Muslim hate group.
Last but never least is a remark made at the Conference by the irrepressible junior Senator from Texas. Ted Cruz said that the IRS should be abolished and that every employee should be sent to stand on the border between Mexico and the United States. He is such a hoot!
Commentary by James Turnage