Kevin McCarthy of California has been chosen to replace Eric Cantor as the House Majority Leader. For anyone who has followed either man’s career, it’s a clear cut case of, “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”
The GOP should have received the message loud and clear when the Republican voters – or at least Republican voters in the key swing state of Virginia – took it upon themselves to hand the sitting House Majority Leader his pink slip. It was unprecedented. That’s something that just doesn’t happen. The Republicans of Virginia nominated a virtually unknown Tea Party candidate, David Brat. Still, the Republican Party’s election of Kevin McCarthy to replace Cantor seems to show a willful attempt to learn nothing from the experience.
Perhaps it’s time for the Republican Party to choose a different mascot. The elephant, with its enormous ears, just doesn’t seem fitting. Perhaps an ostrich – preferably with its head in the sand – would be a better choice. Kevin McCarthy? Really, Republicans? Kevin McCarthy? Come on.
During the 1992 presidential debates, while the candidates were debating which matters were most important to the American people, then-nominee Bill Clinton famously said, “It’s the economy, stupid.” When he did, it resonated with voters – and particularly with his base. It’s time someone within the Republican Party articulates the things that matter to Republicans. Kevin McCarthy isn’t the guy to do that.
Let me make it simple for you, GOP. The people who will be punching a Republican ticket during the 2014 midterm elections and again in the 2016 elections are not looking for a middle of the road guy like Kevin McCarthy who will bend over backwards to work with every other screwball idea the Democrats throw out there. Rather, they want someone who will stand and fight for Republican principles – the ones they vote for. If that means things get deadlocked once in a while, so be it. The best thing to do is the right thing, but there are times that doing nothing is indeed better than doing the wrong – or the left – thing.
How many times do Republicans have to send the message that we want conservative candidates in leadership before the GOP listens?
Kevin McCarthy is not one of the more conservative voices in the Republican Party. Far from it. This report from The American Spectator lists a number of congressional watchdog groups that put McCarthy considerably to the left of Eric Cantor. McCarthy’s stance on illegal immigration is likely to prove a significant stumbling block in leading Republicans – McCarthy’s views are more in line with Democrats’, who favor providing a path to citizenship for those who thumbed their noses at American laws when they crossed the border illegally.
Republican Party, the voters have given you the House of Representatives. They’re mad enough at the ineptitude of the Democratic Party that you’re likely to get an even bigger margin in 2014. You might even take control of the Senate if you give the American people a legitimate option that looks different than the Democrats. Making Kevin McCarthy the House Majority Leader is not a step in that direction. While he isn’t the worst choice that could have been made, McCarthy’s assumption of the position is likely to thrill Democrats more than conservative Republicans.
C’mon, Republican Party. Listen up. Most conservatives get that you aren’t going to get anything better than a moderate in most California districts, just like they realize that Chris Christie is as good as they’re going to get from New Jersey. When it’s time to pick someone to represent the Republican Party’s interests in the House of Representatives, though, you can do better than Kevin McCarthy.