Freedom Caucus vs. Donald Trump: They Win.
Sooner or later, everyone on the House Freedom Caucus will get a chance to talk for five minutes on prime time and the GOP will get around to electing Kevin McCarthy to be Speaker of the House. But since the government isn’t going to run out of money until next September, there’s no great rush to get anything done.
The so-called Freedom Caucus, which claims to represent 50 members of the House, grew out of the Tea Party which never was a political party in any sense of the word. Other than some vague nonsense about a ‘strict’ application of the Constitution to all laws, the Tea Party’s political agenda consisted basically of two items – term limits for all elected officials and a balanced budget requirement to reduce and ultimately eliminate the federal debt.
This time around, the Freedom Caucus wants to make sure that its members get appointed to the most important committees of the House, including but not limited the budget committee and the rules committee, the latter being the committee which decides what legislation will come to the full House for a vote.
Who decides which members of the House will serve on which committees? The Speaker decides, and he does it all by himself. Of course, he consults with this one and that one before announcing which member of the GOP will sit where, but ultimately the way in which the House majority controls the legislative agenda is up to him – or her.
Where the Freedom Caucus usually draws the line, however, is the degree to which its members are willing to make deals with those Big Government dudes across the aisle whose profligate spending and kowtowing to minorities is what has turned the country into such a mess. Every, single member of the Freedom Caucus knows for a fact that inflation is tearing the country apart, and every member of the Freedom Caucus knows that inflation is the result of the out-of-control spending by liberals who are being told what to do by their masters in the Deep State.
But the fact that the idiots who comprise the Freedom Caucus may or may not actually believe that the world is flat and that the Sun rises in the West, doesn’t mean they can’t make deals with every other member of the House depending on what’s the reward for them. So, for example, the biggest big mouth right-winger in Congress, Marjorie Taylor Greene, has publicly split with the Freedom Caucus and is backing McCarthy for Speaker because obviously he’s agreed to appoint her to some committee whose work gets media coverage all the time.
What MTG is really trying to do, however, is play on both sides at the same time. On the one hand, she would like to be seen as a leader of the GOP alt-right; on the other hand, she still wants to help her asshole buddy Donald Trump retain some degree of presence in a political media environment which is slowly but surely shutting him out.
So far, Trump’s 2024 campaign is, at best, stillborn. And his on-again, off-again, on-again endorsement of McCarthy for Speaker has booted him to the rhetorical sidelines in the current GOP debate. Until the House convened this week, Trump was still being described as the ‘leader’ of the GOP. As much as I think the members of that group are just a bunch of dumb schmucks, at least to their credit they have taken Trump down a peg. Or maybe even two pegs.
What I’m hoping will come out of this GOP squabble will be a recognition that the so-called MAGA movement, which was being promoted by Trump as the future of non-RINO Republican politics, will be seen for exactly what it is – a scam developed to stick some cash into Trump’s wallet to make up for the losses from Trump wine and Trump steaks.
Beyond that, I don’t think it matters whether the Freedom Caucus winds up with enough power and authority in the House to bring their beloved legislative agenda to the floor for votes.
I can just see Matt Gaetz making a speech about how schools don’t need to follow the Common Core curriculum because, after all, slavery wasn’t such a bad thing.