Be Careful What You Leave Democrats Alone to Vote For

Will conservatives lose three elections in a row – three chances to win the Senate, three chances to stop Obama and the Democrats’ agenda, three chances to put Democratic senators up in 2016 on the hot seat by forcing them to vote on popular legislation that liberals oppose – because a cohort of die-hard conservative purists cannot bring themselves to choose between the lesser of two evils?

For conservatives, the stakes in this election could hardly be higher.  The course could not be more clear.

Republicans must keep the House and win the Senate.  Nothing else matters.

If...

  • Obamacare,
  • retreats from Iraq and Afghanistan,
  • the loss of the world’s confidence in America’s strength and resolve,
  • the elevation of “wise Latina” Sonya Sotomayor to the Supreme Court,
  • the elevation Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court,
  • Fast and Furious,
  • Solyndra,
  • obsession with global warming,
  • unrestricted illegal immigration,
  • a politicized and corrupt Justice Department,
  • a politicized and corrupt IRS,
  • mismanagement of the fight against Islamic jihadism,
  • “red lines” that get erased almost as soon as they are drawn,
  • attempts to gut the First Amendment to reverse Citizens United,
  • John Kerry as secretary of state,
  • Eric Holder as attorney general,
  • Benghazi,
  • billions of dollars wasted on “stimulus,”
  • Michelle Obama starving innocent schoolchildren with unpalatable food,
  • negotiating with terrorist-supporting Iran over nuclear weapons, and
  • pressuring Israel not to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons that, in time, certainly would be capable of reaching the U.S.

...should have taught conservatives anything, it's that there are worse dangers to life, liberty, and property than returning Thad Cochran and Pat Roberts to the Senate.

Conservatives who today say that they won’t miss Eric Holder after he steps down as attorney general may tomorrow have cause to eat their words when they see whom Obama nominates to replace him.  When the AG nomination shoe drops, which party would conservatives rather control the Senate that vets that nominee?  Or the next Supreme Court vacancy – or two?

The above bullet points detail what Obama has done in the past.  What about the future?  Currently on deck, executive amnesty for unlawful aliens, temporarily on the back burner on the pleadings of vulnerable red-state Democrats and by the dread of possibly having to govern with a Republican Senate and House for his last two years. 

And here’s an angle conservatives thinking of sitting out the election apparently have not considered:  Obama leaves office in 2017.  Any other president would want to leave the maximum number of Democrats behind in the House and Senate; however, the political calculations of this most arrogant and narcissistic of presidents will be different.  After noon on January 20, 2017, Barack Obama will no longer be president and thus will no longer care whether any Democratic senator or representative is re-elected.  After January 20, 2017, he won’t need them anymore.

Democrats might want to think about that while take-no-prisoner conservative purists planning to stay home on November 4 ponder what a completely uninhibited President Obama, the clock ticking on the final two years of his term, might try to accomplish by executive order.

Even the Israelis get it, viewing an unconstrained President Obama as a threat to them, too, per Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick:

After the 2016 elections, Obama will be unconstrained by concerns for Democratic candidates.

Most of the Security Council resolutions against Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria were passed after the 1980 presidential elections when the then lame duck Jimmy Carter felt free to attack Israel at will.

One wonders what it will take for every American conservative to see, equally clearly, the dangers of a lame-duck Obama and a Democratic Senate to us here.

Congress’s primary function, when not busy opposing and investigating incompetent and corrupt presidents, is to enact (and, dare one hope, repeal?) laws.  But what does it matter how even the least conservative senator would vote on this or that  bill if such bill is never brought to the floor for a vote?  Currently, there are over 300 House-passed bills awaiting action in the Senate.  Regardless of what one thinks of so-called RINO senators, we need 51 GOP senators, of whatever stripe, if for no other purpose than to vote for Mitch McConnell as majority leader.

We vie for Senate control with the candidates we have, not the candidates we wish we had.  However much one may dislike Mitch McConnell for his War on Tea Partiers, conservatives must replace Reid with Mitch if any of the aforementioned stalled House bills, with many more sure to come in the next session, are to reach the Senate floor.

And speaking of Mitch McConnell, in what conservative universe does a 96-percent ACU rating make one a RINO?  A more fitting characterization of McConnell, in this writer’s view, is that of a strategic conservative, who holds, and votes, the conservative philosophy, but who also, unlike is critics, must deal with the realities of promoting legislation in a Senate that his party does not control – who picks his fights carefully, after doing a mental cost-benefit analysis on the practical wisdom of fighting on any issue.  E.g., is it worth “shutting down the government” today if it might mean Republicans losing elections tomorrow?

Torches and pitchforks take one only so far; at some point, one needs a strategy.  McConnell strikes one as a master strategist, a skilled manipulator of Senate procedure, who not only will bring stalled House bills to the floor, but can “fill amendment trees” as well as any Democrat and use additional parliamentary maneuvers both to advance conservatives’ agenda and stymie liberals’ efforts to advance theirs.

And in light of years of dealing with Majority Leader Reid, one can pretty safely advise Minority Leader Reid to expect little (read, zero) mercy from Majority Leader McConnell.

However resentful Tea Partiers may be at establishment Republicans’ attempts at, and success in, keeping Tea Party candidates off the ballot, it's necessary to be fair and consider some of their candidates who were on the ballot: Todd Akin.  Richard Mourdock.  Christine O’Donnell.  Sharron Angle.  The GOP’s task of winning back the Senate in 2014 would be easier had Richard Lugar been on the ballot and re-elected – as he surely would have been – in 2012.

The right course is for Tea Partiers and GOP establishment types to agree to support, in each state, the GOP candidate who has the best chance of winning, and that’s a discussion Republicans should have.  But after November 4, not now.  From today until Election Day, grassroots and establishment Republicans need to adjourn the circular firing squad and direct our “friendly fire” at our friends on the other side of the aisle.

To stop President Obama and his liberal ilk from completing their fundamental transformation of America, Republicans must keep the House in November.  Republicans must take back the Senate.

Nothing else matters.

Follow Gene Schwimmer on Twitter.  Visit Gene at geneschwimmer.com.

Will conservatives lose three elections in a row – three chances to win the Senate, three chances to stop Obama and the Democrats’ agenda, three chances to put Democratic senators up in 2016 on the hot seat by forcing them to vote on popular legislation that liberals oppose – because a cohort of die-hard conservative purists cannot bring themselves to choose between the lesser of two evils?

For conservatives, the stakes in this election could hardly be higher.  The course could not be more clear.

Republicans must keep the House and win the Senate.  Nothing else matters.

If...

  • Obamacare,
  • retreats from Iraq and Afghanistan,
  • the loss of the world’s confidence in America’s strength and resolve,
  • the elevation of “wise Latina” Sonya Sotomayor to the Supreme Court,
  • the elevation Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court,
  • Fast and Furious,
  • Solyndra,
  • obsession with global warming,
  • unrestricted illegal immigration,
  • a politicized and corrupt Justice Department,
  • a politicized and corrupt IRS,
  • mismanagement of the fight against Islamic jihadism,
  • “red lines” that get erased almost as soon as they are drawn,
  • attempts to gut the First Amendment to reverse Citizens United,
  • John Kerry as secretary of state,
  • Eric Holder as attorney general,
  • Benghazi,
  • billions of dollars wasted on “stimulus,”
  • Michelle Obama starving innocent schoolchildren with unpalatable food,
  • negotiating with terrorist-supporting Iran over nuclear weapons, and
  • pressuring Israel not to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons that, in time, certainly would be capable of reaching the U.S.

...should have taught conservatives anything, it's that there are worse dangers to life, liberty, and property than returning Thad Cochran and Pat Roberts to the Senate.

Conservatives who today say that they won’t miss Eric Holder after he steps down as attorney general may tomorrow have cause to eat their words when they see whom Obama nominates to replace him.  When the AG nomination shoe drops, which party would conservatives rather control the Senate that vets that nominee?  Or the next Supreme Court vacancy – or two?

The above bullet points detail what Obama has done in the past.  What about the future?  Currently on deck, executive amnesty for unlawful aliens, temporarily on the back burner on the pleadings of vulnerable red-state Democrats and by the dread of possibly having to govern with a Republican Senate and House for his last two years. 

And here’s an angle conservatives thinking of sitting out the election apparently have not considered:  Obama leaves office in 2017.  Any other president would want to leave the maximum number of Democrats behind in the House and Senate; however, the political calculations of this most arrogant and narcissistic of presidents will be different.  After noon on January 20, 2017, Barack Obama will no longer be president and thus will no longer care whether any Democratic senator or representative is re-elected.  After January 20, 2017, he won’t need them anymore.

Democrats might want to think about that while take-no-prisoner conservative purists planning to stay home on November 4 ponder what a completely uninhibited President Obama, the clock ticking on the final two years of his term, might try to accomplish by executive order.

Even the Israelis get it, viewing an unconstrained President Obama as a threat to them, too, per Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick:

After the 2016 elections, Obama will be unconstrained by concerns for Democratic candidates.

Most of the Security Council resolutions against Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria were passed after the 1980 presidential elections when the then lame duck Jimmy Carter felt free to attack Israel at will.

One wonders what it will take for every American conservative to see, equally clearly, the dangers of a lame-duck Obama and a Democratic Senate to us here.

Congress’s primary function, when not busy opposing and investigating incompetent and corrupt presidents, is to enact (and, dare one hope, repeal?) laws.  But what does it matter how even the least conservative senator would vote on this or that  bill if such bill is never brought to the floor for a vote?  Currently, there are over 300 House-passed bills awaiting action in the Senate.  Regardless of what one thinks of so-called RINO senators, we need 51 GOP senators, of whatever stripe, if for no other purpose than to vote for Mitch McConnell as majority leader.

We vie for Senate control with the candidates we have, not the candidates we wish we had.  However much one may dislike Mitch McConnell for his War on Tea Partiers, conservatives must replace Reid with Mitch if any of the aforementioned stalled House bills, with many more sure to come in the next session, are to reach the Senate floor.

And speaking of Mitch McConnell, in what conservative universe does a 96-percent ACU rating make one a RINO?  A more fitting characterization of McConnell, in this writer’s view, is that of a strategic conservative, who holds, and votes, the conservative philosophy, but who also, unlike is critics, must deal with the realities of promoting legislation in a Senate that his party does not control – who picks his fights carefully, after doing a mental cost-benefit analysis on the practical wisdom of fighting on any issue.  E.g., is it worth “shutting down the government” today if it might mean Republicans losing elections tomorrow?

Torches and pitchforks take one only so far; at some point, one needs a strategy.  McConnell strikes one as a master strategist, a skilled manipulator of Senate procedure, who not only will bring stalled House bills to the floor, but can “fill amendment trees” as well as any Democrat and use additional parliamentary maneuvers both to advance conservatives’ agenda and stymie liberals’ efforts to advance theirs.

And in light of years of dealing with Majority Leader Reid, one can pretty safely advise Minority Leader Reid to expect little (read, zero) mercy from Majority Leader McConnell.

However resentful Tea Partiers may be at establishment Republicans’ attempts at, and success in, keeping Tea Party candidates off the ballot, it's necessary to be fair and consider some of their candidates who were on the ballot: Todd Akin.  Richard Mourdock.  Christine O’Donnell.  Sharron Angle.  The GOP’s task of winning back the Senate in 2014 would be easier had Richard Lugar been on the ballot and re-elected – as he surely would have been – in 2012.

The right course is for Tea Partiers and GOP establishment types to agree to support, in each state, the GOP candidate who has the best chance of winning, and that’s a discussion Republicans should have.  But after November 4, not now.  From today until Election Day, grassroots and establishment Republicans need to adjourn the circular firing squad and direct our “friendly fire” at our friends on the other side of the aisle.

To stop President Obama and his liberal ilk from completing their fundamental transformation of America, Republicans must keep the House in November.  Republicans must take back the Senate.

Nothing else matters.

Follow Gene Schwimmer on Twitter.  Visit Gene at geneschwimmer.com.