Opinion by George McClellan:
The euphoria sweeping the ranks of the GOP upon Trumps election must be tempered with common sense, a commodity sorely lacking in Washington politics, especially the Republicans. Please note that Speaker Paul Ryan did not get a unanimous vote from his caucus for the Speakership, but in his happy talk to the press, surrounded by fawning congressmen and women smiling for the photo op, he said one of the most alarming things I heard for awhile.
Ryan posited a return to the corrupting program of political favoritism, “earmarks,” so beloved of the elite class and hated by the taxpayers. It’s also called “Pork-Barrel” spending and is damaging because it corrupts. If Ryan wants to be the author of the GOP’s plan to follow the DNC into political oblivion, then, by all means he should push ahead for that program.
Be alarmed Republican voters, because Trump’s populist victory, expressly to drain the swamp and stymie the evident corruption ruining our government, is in real danger of being derailed by the Establishment elites, if we let them. We expect competent, honest government, we want it and by damn, if it doesn’t happen we can sweep the GOP away too.
Beware also of complacency. It’s deadly to the process and politicians know it. Here’s a message the GOP should heed: long serving Florida Republican Congressman, John Mica, (22 years), failed in his reelection bid to ride either Trump’s or Rubio’s coattails to Florida election victory because he specifically and proudly, endorsed a return to congressional earmarks. He lost to a Democrat in a district that otherwise went totallyTrump. John Mica was a GOP pillar of corruption and to save his position, his district was gerrymandered to make his re-election assured. Well, he lost! How’s that for a special kind of stupid?
Younger readers may wonder what “earmarks” are. The short definition is they are legalized political bribery, a mechanism that allows the House Speaker to legislatively direct taxpayer funds to individual members in turn for votes favorable to another member or favored programs. A congressman then, theoretically, gets to spend the earmarked money in his district making his voters happy thus reassuring his reelection in the next campaign. It’s the old “Bridge to Nowhere” scam. It’s corruption!
The Tea Party put an end to the practice and now comes Paul Ryan wanting to reintroduce it to our congress. That folk’s, is the swamp that Trump wants to drain. Our own 9th District Congressman, the Hon. Mr. Doug Collins, has proudly announced his elevation to a position in the House leadership conference somewhere at the fifth level of importance. That might be important to Mr. Doug Collins, but it has no importance to me except to remind me that in politics, leadership positions are ego feeders that rewards those who go along to get along. Corruption is the handmaiden of fiscal mischief.
It alerts me also, to closely watch the voting record of my Congressman and act accordingly. I suggest everyone add GovTrack.us to their bookmarks and keep up with the voting record of your Senator and Congressmen. Complacency will kill us. That this idea still lurks in the incubator of political favoritism and was exposed so easily by the House Speakers off the cuff comment, should alert all voters that Trumps victory is not all inclusive and Trumps path to draining the swamp, is strewn with land mines, traps and extreme dangers.
I am hopeful. Christie, an establishment type along with Mike Rogers, are both gone. That’s just the start. Actually, we can’t afford the old ways. Remember, freedom is the goal, the Constitution is the way. Now, got get ‘em. (18 Nov 2016)