Republicans have a real problem. They can’t find anyone for the job of Speaker. The base hates anyone with any pragmatism, no matter how nuts they seem to the rest of the country. Even their budget king, Paul Ryan, is facing steep criticism as a possible speaker, and he doesn’t even seem to want the job.
Elaina Plott writing at the National Review took on the conservative opposition to Paul Ryan as Speaker today, in an article entitled “What’s Driving Conservative Opposition to Paul Ryan”.
Saying Representative Ryan finds himself “the latest target of some of conservative media’s biggest stars”, including radio hosts Mark Levin, Laura Ingraham and Fox News’ Sean Hannity. Plott reports Ingraham tweeting, “They tried Eric Cantor. They tried McCarthy. The only ‘Young Gun’ left is Ryan.”
Conservatives are rejecting the last of the standing “Young Gun Republicans”.
You remember the Young Guns — they were going to take over the Republican Party. The youth. The energy. The cool. The stars of the Young Guns were now rejected and replaced Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Rep. and former VP candidate Paul Ryan (R-WI) and now Majority Whip and just-resigned Speaker’s gavel seeker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).
In 2010, Politico reported Speaker Boehner eyeing the Young Guns warily, “even joked about his youthful lieutenants aiming for his job as the top House Republican. Or, maybe he wasn’t joking.”
“The three of them know that my job is to make sure that they’re well-qualified and ready to take my place,” Boehner said, taking a slight pause before cracking, “at the appropriate moment.”
Plott says the conservative rejection of Ryan is “mostly a result of Ryan’s support for comprehensive immigration reform, perhaps the one position most guaranteed to breed distrust and ill will among much of today’s conservative base. With such animosity suddenly bubbling to the surface, some of the same people who rallied around Ryan during the 2012 presidential race are now working to thwart his bid for House speaker before it’s even begun. It’s a testament both to the outsize role the issue of immigration has taken on within the Republican party and to the ever-widening chasm between the grassroots and establishment.”
Oops. Cantor has been Tea Partied out, McCarthy dropped his bid for the Speaker after making a fool of himself by outing Republican secrets about their endless Benghazi probes, and Paul Ryan is now not good enough for conservatives. Ryan as committed the sin of “amnesty” — that is, being rational enough to know we must address our undocumented worker situation.
Republicans can’t really be surprised that the base believes them when they make undocumented workers out to be the Evil that must be fought. The things Republicans have to tell their base to get out the vote keep coming back to bite them once reality hits– or they need to get something real done.
If Ryan were elected Speaker, he would face the issues and problems that chased John Boehner out of office.
This is the inevitable result of their long implemented Southern Strategy, which they just keep expanding to create new boogeymen. Then they don’t seem to understand when the base believes the fear Republicans sold them.
Young Guns down. Young Guns down.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.