The Republican Party is under attack from within, the storied traditions of respectable governance are being cast aside by uncivilized hooligans. At least that’s what they want you to think. And this time, they aren’t Democrats trying to make Republicans look obstructionist. They are the aging pooh-bahs of the GOP, who see their positions of power threatened by an up-and-coming cadre of young leaders who posses a dangerous superpower: principles.
Leaders like Sens. Mike Lee and Ted Cruz have joined a growing movement in the House and Senate populated by members who ran for office in 2010 and 2012 on the solemn promise to do everything in their power to get rid of the ill-gotten law called ObamaCare.
Unlike some of their colleagues, who ran on promises to repeal ObamaCare and balance the budget and return power and money back to American families, these guys seem to actually mean it. Woe unto them.
In recognition of their principles, the establishment has turned its attacks dogs on its own party and on the grassroots conservatives who trusted them.
A veritable who’s who from the Republican old guard is being rolled out to opine from the sidelines and serve as “unnamed sources” in defending the establishment’s united front against their own party and the people who elected them.
Their complaint? That the young-guns aren’t respecting “the process.”
Unfortunately for this old guard, times have changed. The American people have seen “the process” for what it is: a charade.
In 2008, the bipartisan collusion of insiders, lifelong politicians and special interests were so committed to the process that they promised to drive America off a fiscal cliff.
First it was Republicans, and then Democrats, but the real story was a mutual admiration club that saw politics as a game, and policy as a byproduct. It was a well-paid game, but the policy outcomes only served their interests, not ours.
The bipartisan purveyors of business-as-usual seem utterly uninterested in the consequences of their actions.
Republicans passed the Patriot Act and Medicare Part D, perfected the practice of using spending earmarks as political favors, and authorized lots of easy money from the Fed fund their spending sprees.
The Democrats doubled down, providing the votes for the TARP bailout, spending another trillion dollars on crony-allocated “stimulus” on the failed projects of the politically connected.
And now as we approach implementation of ObamaCare, the Obama administration has arbitrarily decided to delay or repeal some 20 provisions of the law, most notably the employer mandate, until after the 2014 elections.
This utterly outrageous and arbitrary process of a president choosing to only implement the parts of laws he likes seems so Third World Junta.
But standing up to the president would be an outrage, the establishment says. We must respect the office, the “settled law” and, above all, the process.
It’s crazy to believe that the same closed, top-down leadership that got us into this mess offers any guidance on how to get America back on track to freedom and economic prosperity.
A little disruption of the status quo in Washington seems like the only reasonable thing to do, and We the People have been populating Congress with a growing group of principle leaders who are committed to fighting for us no matter how many feathers they ruffle in the process.
So now it’s Them versus Us, and the grassroots are proud to stand with the good guys, unpopular as they may be inside the Beltway.
Win or lose this battle, its clear that there is no putting the genie back in the bottle; there’s no stopping the newly empowered grassroots from reclaiming their property right in the American enterprise.
When the dust settles, historians will write about this political realignment as a tipping point in America, a paradigm shift that changed the rules. I hope America beats Washington.
Matt Kibbe is president and chief community organizer of Free the People. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller, "Don't Hurt People and Don't Take Their Stuff." Follow him on Twitter at @MKibbe.