Tim Carney writes in the attached piece that the small government types have established beachheads in Washington DC.
We have said that the Tea Party barbarians are at the gate and are now coming over the walls.
Matt Kibbe has talked about the “hostile takeover” going on in the GOP driven by people committed to small government.
But we are all saying the same thing. Serious change is here and a lot more is coming to Washington DC.
The DC Republicans are sort of amazed by the whole phenomenon. Wasn’t it just 3 years ago that everything was normal? What happened? The GOP got defense money and farm subsidies. The Dems got social programs. We yelled at each other a little bit. But in the end everyone knew the game. Get to DC and gather power. Get to DC and gather fame. Get to DC and gather money. Then these Tea Party people showed up and started bitching about cutting spending. What’s worse is that many of them actually meant it.
“Do you know how embarrassing it is when you’ve called yourself a ‘conservative’ for your entire career and then some snot nosed new congressman from Missouri or some other God forsaken place says on TV that you aren’t. And then offers proof?”
“No, I don’t Senator.”
“Well I’ll tell you. It’s damned embarrassing.”
“We should have killed the Internet when we could have. Now everyday people actually know what’s going on. And, well, that’s damned embarrassing too.”
(From The Washington Examiner)
Floor leaders and committee chairmen have always been the GOP’s main contact point with corporations’ political action committees and lobbyists. If a member stays on the good side of party leaders, the leaders make a phone call to a lobbyist who throws the member a fundraiser.
Similarly, if a staffer always played nice with the Establishment, that brought with it job security: Even if your boss retired, you could land on your feet, as the leadership would recommend you for a job in another office, or K Street would hire you.
You can see how this would make dissenting staffers and members watch their words and actions. Sure, members were allowed to vote against the leadership – as long as the leadership didn’t need your vote. But at the end of the day, you had to play ball, otherwise you got no money for re-election, and no jobs for you or your staff.