WASHINGTON, D.C. – Give us the House, they said. We need more than the House; give us the Senate, they said. We can’t fight presidential vetoes, give us the White House, they said.
2010, 2014, 2016 elections came and Republicans now have congressional majorities, an President unafraid to stir things up, and, still, Republicans fail to reign in government spending at every opportunity.
““It’s a little bit frustrating right now,” said Rep. Mark Walker, the chairman of the Republican Study Committee (RSC), the largest GOP caucus in the House.
Walker issued a warning last week that some RSC members may vote against a package of spending bills the House is due to consider when it returns to session. The package includes defense and labor appropriations and a continuing resolution to keep the parts of the government not yet funded by spending bills running past Oct. 1.
But Walker admits that he and other RSC members opposed to the package would seem to have little hope in blocking it.
The package passed in the Senate on Tuesday in an overwhelming 93-7 vote. In the House, an earlier package of spending bills passed in a 377-20 just last week, with both Democrats and Republicans backing it.”
With vote tallies like that on huge spending bills, conservatives are right to be frustrated, and understandably discouraged. Even the Freedom Caucus is sizing up the spending bills, and their proximity to midterm elections, and passing on any meaningful resistance to the splurge.
“I don’t know that conservatives have a whole lot of leverage here, so I haven’t given it as much thought as I have given to other things, because most of the Democrats will vote for this and smile very big,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), the chairman of the House Freedom Caucus.
Several factors have left conservatives less well-positioned to extract concessions.
Congressional leadership strategically bundled funding for the labor bill, a major Democratic priority, with funding for the Pentagon, a major Republican priority. For conservatives, voting against the package would mean voting against an increase in defense spending and a raise for the troops.”
That “strategy” of corralling everyone’s spending priorities into one big monstrous tab for the taxpayers is part of what is wrong with congress, and why passing sensible budgets is nearly impossible inside the beltway.
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Spending bills should be stand alone bills with up or down votes, not leverage in a giant horse trading scheme that adds to the deficit and soaks taxpayers for years to come.
Instead, so much emphasis is placed on getting things done (no matter the costs) that Republican leadership is more than willing to advance the Democrats’ agenda for them in order to avoid rocking the boat.
“Meadows said he would have no trouble voting against the defense bill because of what it is packaged with. He criticized GOP leaders for passing bills with Democratic support rather than focusing the bills on GOP priorities and muscling them through with Republican votes.
“It’s a Republican majority,” he said. “It’s always easy to pass a bill of the other party. I mean, I can tell you, most of my voters will not see this as a win.””
No, they won’t, Rep. Meadows.
What is the argument for maintaining Republican majorities in congress if they merely pass the same gargantuan spending bills the Democrats would pass?
Yes, they passed tax cuts. However, they are currently abandoning previously discussed expansions of those cuts because of political considerations.
While the president’s Supreme Court nominee is subjected to a orchestrated smear by Democrats in the Senate, the circus conveniently gives these politicians cover as they vote to pass $800+ billion in new spending.
There has got to be a consequence for spending taxpayers into oblivion while pretending to be a party of limited government. Unfortunately, allowing Republicans to lose control may risk even more spending splurges.
But all of this spending profligacy should be remembered and shouted from the mountain tops when it comes to primary elections. REAL conservatives that have the gumption to actually resist spending growth and make actual cuts need to be sent to clean up the Swamp. There is a mere handful of those conservatives now, and they need back up.
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