Mitch McConnell Warns He Could Intervene In 2022 GOP Primaries To Boost Establishment Candidates

On Monday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) cautioned that he and those associated with him are ready to intervene in any Republican Senate primaries to defeat candidates he views as “unelectable.”

McConnell told radio host Hugh Hewitt that he, or a group closely linked to him called the Senate Leadership Fund (SLF), would be willing to get involved in any primary race.

McConnell replied to Hewitt, “If necessary. There’s no question that in order to win … you have to appeal to the general election audience. I’ll be keeping an eye on that. Hopefully we won’t have to intervene, but if we do, we will.”

Conservatives will no doubt view the comments from the establishment Republican as meaning McConnell will oppose grassroots conservatives or Trump-aligned Republicans.

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Trump Candidates Vs. McConnell Candidates

Mitch McConnell and his allies ready to jump into any GOP primary they think needs guidance sets up an interesting dynamic heading into 2022 for Republicans.

By all accounts, former President Donald Trump is the head of the party, and an endorsement from him will be sought by most candidates seeking office. 

So far, the SLF has endorsed one candidate on the opposite side of Trump: Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).

Murkowski, who voted to convict Trump in his second impeachment, has picked up a primary challenger – though Trump has not yet endorsed in that race.

Will McConnell try to woo candidates with cash? Probably so, but as  Trump’s popularity shows no signs of letting up, PACs that are associated with him are raising record amounts of cash.

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Will McConnell/SLF Candidates Water Down The GOP?

Back in February, McConnell stated that the thing he cared about the most was “electability.” Americans who want to elect Republicans are also concerned with electability, but at what cost? 

Is it possible that, if McConnell and his friends intervene in enough GOP primaries, would Trump supporters smell a rat, and be suspicious of McConnell of watering down the party until it is full of John McCains and Mitt Romneys?

Just more establishment RINOs who will cave to every liberal Democrat demand?

There is also the problem of McConnell intervention into races where the context of background surrounding candidates figures very heavily in the race. In Missouri for example, former Gov. Eric Greitens has thrown his hat in the ring to replace Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO). Greitens resigned from the governorship after a sex scandal in 2018.

While Greitens may have name recognition which might give him a lead in the polls due to core support from those who don’t care about the reasons behind his ouster from the Governor’s mansion, and those who just know his name, does not mean he is the most popular with voters with knowledge of his background. 

Would not just Missouri voters, but voters in any state appreciate team McConnell swooping in to take over a primary election?

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The Task Republicans Must Focus On

The main task at hand for Republicans is taking both the House and the Senate back in 2022. Republicans must defend 20 seats, while Democrats must only defend 14.

Four of those seats were won by Democrats in 2020, and the GOP is hoping to flip them red. They are also looking at taking seats from Georgia, Arizona, and New Hampshire.

Jack Pandol, communications director for the SLF says that, “As has long been SLF’s policy, we reserve the right to intervene in cases where a candidate is a clear threat to lose a seat in a general election and to protect our Republican incumbents.”

Intervention by Mitch McConnell and friends could be seen as interfering with the will of the people, and nothing more than a power grab on his part.

Perhaps McConnell and the SLF should find out if the candidate in question is who Mitch McConnell wants or the people want. 

 

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Pro-McConnell PAC May Have Something To Say About Trump 2022 Endorsements

As 2022 gets closer, most Republicans know that Donald Trump plans to be an integral part of the campaign by endorsing candidates. But he may have some competition regarding which candidates have a better chance of beating Democrats.

The Senate Leadership Fund is aligned closely with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).

While they are only on the opposite side of Trump in one race so far, (SLF has endorsed Lisa Murkowski) that could quickly change as the campaigns get under way.

Whose assessment will have more bite, the McConnell wing or the Trump wing?

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Possible Conflict Being Set Up

Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell, once portrayed by the media as working partners while Trump was in office, have exploded that narrative.

After McConnell blamed Trump for the Jan 6 protest at the Capitol, it became clear that a bigger crack up was in the works.

This sets up a possible interesting but risky state of affairs for the GOP.

With a 50-50 split in the Senate, and several key retirements taking place in five states, three of which might be described as fairly reliable red, Republicans want nothing left to chance with selecting candidates.

Jack Pandol, communications director for the Senate Leadership Fund stated, “As has long been SLF’s policy, we reserve the right to intervene in cases where a candidate is a clear threat to lose a seat in a general election and to protect our Republican incumbents.”

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Is McConnell Super PAC Endorsing McConnell Buddies?

Mitch McConnell stated early on what his goal for 2022 was, to get Republicans elected.

Back in February he said, “My goal is, in every way possible, to have nominees representing the Republican Party who can win in November. Some of them may be people the former president likes. Some of them may not be. The only thing I care about is electability.”

Is McConnell seeing to it that those seen as “establishment” Republicans get re-elected? 

Getting Republicans elected is good, but Mitch McConnell obviously has a personal stake in the outcome of the 2022 midterms. A victory puts him back in charge of the Senate. 

Murkowski, no fan of President Trump, was one of seven GOP Senators who voted to convict Trump during his impeachment trial after the Jan. 6 protest. 

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One Example

Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), Chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee says that the NRSC will not get involved in open primaries. NRSC’s communications director Chris Hartline said that, “The NRSC has no interest spending any time or money attacking other Republicans. We started Day 1 defining Democrats across the country as the ultra-liberal, big-spending, open borders radicals that they are.” 

But there’s at least one set of circumstances, Axios points out, that SLF and NRSC may not be able to resist, such as the race in Missouri for the seat held currently by Roy Blunt.

Former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, who resigned following a sex scandal in 2018, is a candidate for the soon-to-be-open seat being vacated by Blunt. It is candidates like Greitens that McConnell and the establishment are concerned could get an endorsement from Donald Trump.

That might be a hefty endorsement in a state Trump won last time by 15 points.

Since Axios initially published their report, the president of SLF, Steven Law, claimed that the Trump vs. McConnell angle was wrong. 

Time will tell when the endorsements and donations start rolling out.

 

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Paul Ryan Set To Be Keynote Speaker At Never-Trumper Kinzinger’s Fundraiser

Former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) will be the keynote speaker on Monday at a fundraising event for anti-Trump Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL). The event is a pricey one, according to Politico, ticket prices range from $250 to $11,600.

Kinzinger was one of ten Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump for what many critics of the former president say is his inciting of the riot that took place at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Kinzinger, who now regularly attacks Trump, may well pay a political price for being outspoken in his contempt of the former president.

Of the ten GOP House members who voted to impeach Trump, nine, including Kinzinger, have at least one 2022 primary challenger, and the they all have the attention of The Donald.

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Ryan Also A Critic Of Trump

Paul Ryan left Congress in 2019 after a number of GOP House members and Senators announced they would not be seeking re-election.

While the official reasons range from running for governorships to House members running for the Senate, to the old standby of “wanting to spend more time with my family,” there is some thought that many of those incumbent House members and Senators were done with Donald Trump.

In 2016, Ryan told Republicans that they “should feel free to abandon Trump,” making it pretty clear that there was no effort to encourage Republicans to work with Trump when he took office. 

Paul Ryan has also been a critic of Trump. He called efforts by Republicans to challenge electoral college votes for President Joe Biden “anti-democratic and anti-conservative.”

After the election, Ryan also said that Trump should accept the results of the 2020 election, and “embrace the transfer of power.” 

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Kinzinger, Other Never-Trumpers Portrayed By The Media As ‘Rebels’

Much like his colleague Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), who was recently removed from a GOP leadership position, Kinzinger is portrayed by the media as being someone who is alone in his beliefs, who is in a “its lonely at the top” position.

A February New York Times article describes him as someone who “now faces the classic challenge for political mavericks aiming to prove their independence.” 

Not only is he seen by other Republicans much like Cheney, as ignoring the direction voters want to take the party in, but soon after his impeachment vote, a cousin put out a very public letter in which she says that Kinzinger had disappointed the family, and that, “You have embarrassed the Kinzinger family name!” The cousin added that she wanted Kinzinger to be “shunned.”

Kinzinger recently formed a Political Action Committee with the goal being to “reformat” the party by emphasizing low taxes, defense, and social conservatism. The one thing not mentioned however, is an America First Agenda.

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Clear Lines Have Been Drawn

Having Paul Ryan speak at any GOP event sends a clear message not just to the party but to voters as well. There is no doubt that Donald Trump is now, and will likely remain, the most influential person in the Republican Party. 

But it becomes more and more clear that there are two distinct wings of the party. One sure way to gauge which one is more popular with voters will be when Donald Trump begins to hold rallies next month.

It will also reveal a lot about where conservative voters’ heads are leading up to 2022. Will they feel the need to chastise Adam Kinzinger and the others who voted to impeach Donald Trump by voting them out of office? 

Back in February, residents of Kinzinger’s district were asked about how they felt about his vote to impeach Trump.

One of those residents, a 63-year old retired mechanical engineer had this to say, “If you want to vote as a Democrat, vote as a Democrat. Otherwise, if you’re a Republican, then support our president. Trump was the first president who represented me. The stuff he did helped me.”

Adam Kinzinger may be “at peace” with his vote. His constituents might not be.

 

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The Squad: America’s Worst, Dumbest Reality Show

Americans love reality TV. Oh sure, we can post our own families’ dirty laundry on social media, or find the truly weird in our own daily lives, but watching the antics of other peoples’ sketchy, eye-rolling, family dramas is way more appealing.

Perhaps it affirms for us that we are not alone in having to corral and deal with the less-than-desirable elements in our lives. It makes us feel better about our own circumstances.

But for those who have relatively normal and boring family lives, America has its very own reality show: the latest episode of the Democrat politicians and the wacky things they say and do that they think Americans will actually embrace whole heartedly.

To be more specific, I am talking about American politics’ First Family of reality TV. No not the Bidens, although they do have quite a few reality TV show elements – just look at Hunter.

No, the first family of political reality TV is of course, “The Squad.”

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The Origins Of America’s Reality TV

Most average Americans, if there is any weirdness to be found in their family tree, have a pretty good idea of how it got there. When it comes to politics, the conventional wisdom is that it takes a special kind of person to run for office.

What that usually means is a person who isn’t overly-caring of their fellow citizens. What it usually means is the kind of person with an ego big enough to think they are the only ones who can save the district, state, country from impending doom.  

The newest Squad reality TV show started in New York City. (Where else?) A 29-year old bartender named Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez beat out a long-time incumbent for her congressional seat. At the time of her election, she was the youngest member of the U.S. House of Representatives. 

But then things started to happen. Things on Twitter that made conservatives cringe and liberals giddy. She described herself, like Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, as a “Democratic Socialist.” 

What the hell is a “democratic socialist,” you ask? It is a Socialist who is too afraid to come right out and say they are a Socialist. 

Behold:

And if that wasn’t enough to make you scratch your head, there’s the “Green New Deal.” Trillions of dollars for things like “net zero” emissions, choo-choo trains, and solar panels. 

After all, don’t forget, we will all be dead in 12 years if we don’t Save the Planet.

The 12 year deadline never seems to come, does it?

Rational people dared to ask, “But who will pay for all of this?” Ocasio-Cortez’s answer: “Some people are like, ‘Oh, it’s unrealistic, oh it’s fake, oh it doesn’t address this little minute thing. And I’m like, ‘You try! You do it.’ ‘Cause you’re not. ‘Cause you’re not. So, until you do it, I’m the boss. How ’bout that?”

The boss? Perhaps Boston University should have required a course on Civics as well.

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Reality TV Has To Keep Uping The Ante

Just when you get used to a certain level of crazy, it gets better. Reality TV requires new and absurd drama to keep viewers locked in.

Now AOC had buddies in the form of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI). For those old enough to remember, it’s starting to look like those old “Road To” movies with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope, or even the Three Stooges, only without the ensuing hilarity.

At a Counsel On American-Islamic Relations event in 2019, Omar famously described the attacks on 9/11 thusly, “CAIR was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something.” 

Tlaib is no better. After being sworn into Congress in January 2019, Tlaib said that when her young son asked her if bullies win, her answer to him was that they don’t, and speaking of President Donald Trump continued, “Baby, they don’t,’ because we’re gonna go in there and we’re going to impeach the motherf****r.”

Hey Rashida, do you kiss your son with that mouth? 

The recent attacks by the terrorist group Hamas on Israel have also brought out the “best” of Omar and Tlaib.

Unfortunately sometimes, the crazy isn’t just wacky, it’s downright dangerous.

Does it get better you ask? Oh yes it does. Not wanting to let decent crazy go to waste, a fourth Squad member, Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), when recounting the riot on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6, told MSNBC’s Joy Reid that she felt “deep ancestral fear.”

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The Craziest Of All?

But perhaps nowhere in the history of political instability is the crazy more on display than the newest member of the Squad, Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO).

An in-your-face Black Lives Matter activist, Bush is famous for standing outside the home of Mark and Patricia McCloskey with a bullhorn with a group of 300 or so protesters who came through a gate of their private street.

The McCloskeys now-famously stood in front of their house armed with a pistol and rifle. 

The cherry on this crazy cake comes from a report in the Washington Free Beacon that reveals that Bush has worked as a “faith healer” for a group that claims to have cured AIDS, cancer, and yes even COVID-19. Apparently, they have also claimed to resurrect the dead.

The report continues, with the head of the “church,” Charles Ndifon describing a phone call with Bush. Ndifon claims to have cured her of COVID within 30 minutes through the phone.

Bush also started a chapter of the church in St. Louis in 2011.

Kingdom Embassy Churches are headquartered in Rhode Island, and while Ndifon says he does not take a salary, he does mange to stay in luxury hotels and wear designer suits. Praise Jesus.

Ironically, curing COVID over the phone is far more realistic and plausible than the Squad’s economic ideas.

Bush also recently made headlines when she referred to mothers on the eve of Mother’s Day as “birthing people.”

What will she call fathers next month? “Impregnating people?”

The examples are far too numerous to chronicle here. One merely needs to plug in a Squad members name into the Twitter search bar to find countless instances ranging from the bizarre and absurd to downright silly.

One thing is for certain: the Squad reality show will go on. All are in deep-blue, safe Democrat districts.

You’ll have to keep tuning in to see what new preposterous drama they’ll cook up next!

 

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Conservatives Are Lining Up To Primary Anti-Trump Cheney In Wyoming

On Wednesday, House Republicans ousted Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) from her position as GOP Conference Chair, and now challengers in Wyoming are lining up to oust her from her Congressional seat altogether.

As many as six people have already announced they will challenge Cheney for her House seat in the 2022 midterms. A defiant Cheney told reporters on Thursday that she “obviously welcomes” anyone who wants to throw their hat in the ring against her. 

“There are millions and millions of Republicans out there who want us to be a party that stands for principles and who are very worried about the direction that the party is going and don’t want the party to be dragged backward by the former president.”

Cheney has been an outspoken critic of former President Donald Trump, and has also spoken out about her concern with the direction of the Republican Party as influenced by Trump.

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Trouble For Cheney Started With Impeachment

Liz Cheney’s troubles began not long after her impeachment vote against Donald Trump. In February, Cheney was censured by the Republican parties of ten Wyoming counties. Some used phrases in their announcements of a censure like “betrayed the trust” of voters, and “devalued the political influence of the state of Wyoming.”

Cheney also survived an attempt in February to remove her from the Conference chair position, with even fellow Republican Matt Gaetz of Florida traveling to Wyoming to encourage voters there to remove her from office. 

Last month at a GOP retreat in Florida, calls for her to be removed from the Conference Chair got louder as Cheney was at odds with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) over the scope of a commission that is investigating the events at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

She also said that anyone who challenged the 2020 election results should be disqualified from being the 2024 GOP nominee – a clear shot at Trump.

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Who Are Cheney’s Challengers?

State Senator, gun rights activist, and Cheyenne-area business owner Anthony Bouchard was the first to announce he intended to challenge Cheney.

Another Wyoming legislator, a conservative radio host whose family owns Casper-area radio stations, State Rep. Chuck Gray has also announced he is running. 

Retired Army Colonel Denton Knapp, who currently lives in California but grew up in Wyoming and plans to move back, has thrown his hat in the ring. He said what prompted him was, “What’s missing right now is trust in our elected officials. Wyomingites expected Cheney to vote a certain way and she didn’t. As a result, she’s going through consequences.”

Also in the running is Marissa Joy Selvig, former mayor of Pavillion, a small town of 200. Selvig said, “I’ve never been a Cheney fan.” She added, “She has been working more for herself and for the Republican Party than she has the citizens of Wyoming. That’s what I see.”

Businessman Darin Smith is the most recent challenger to announce his candidacy. He announced his intention to run last week.

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Could Be An Uphill Battle For Cheney Opponents

Liz Cheney has a formidable track record when it comes to campaigning. She has beaten both Democrat and Republican opponents in the Cowboy state, and enjoys all the benefits of incumbency.

In the first quarter of this year, she raked in $1.5 million, her best fundraising quarter yet. Being the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, she enjoys universal name recognition and family legacy advantages, too.

Prior to being in the House, Cheney ran an ill-fated Senate campaign against then Senator Mike Enzi, but dropped out after only six months. Accusations of being a “carpet-bagger” dogged Cheney and claims that she had not spent much time in Wyoming until moving to affluent Jackson Hole in 2012.

Liz Cheney is free to do what she believes is right, but she might want to get home to see if the people in Wyoming agree with her.

 

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Liz Cheney Floats Conspiracy Theory That Trump Will ‘Unravel The Democracy To Come Back Into Power’

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) has created a new position for herself, along with a new conspiracy theory about Donald Trump.

Cheney, who was voted out of her leadership position as GOP Conference Chair by a voice vote meeting on Wednesday, told NBC News about her new leadership role: “I intend to be the leader, one of the leaders, in a fight to help to restore our party.”

She added a new wrinkle in the form a conspiracy theory, saying that former President Donald Trump is willing “to unravel the democracy to come back into power.”

Cheney has criticized Trump continually the last few months, saying she believes that the continuing influence Trump has within the GOP is “very dangerous” and “a cult of personality.”

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Cheney Too Divisive For Leadership Role

Cheney’s ouster from GOP leadership stems from her constant attacks on the popular Trump. During her interview with NBC, Cheney said that, “silence is not an option.” She continued,

“For reasons that I don’t understand, leaders in my party have decided to embrace the former President who launched that attack. And I think you’ve watched over the course of the last several months, the former President get more aggressive, more vocal, pushing the lie, and I think that’s a really important thing for people to understand. This isn’t about looking backwards. This is about the real-time current potential damage that he’s doing, that he continues to do.”

Cheney also added, “He’s unfit. He never again can be anywhere close to the Oval Office.”

Cheney also had words for House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, saying that she believes that he is “not leading with principle, and I think that is sad and I think it’s dangerous.”

Trump support aside, the main focus inside the GOP right now are the 2022 midterm elections, and winning back the House and Senate.

Republicans clearly felt that Cheney attacking the most popular Republican, Trump, was becoming a distraction to that goal.

That point was somewhat reiterated by Chairman of the Republican Study Committee Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN). “We are unified behind a single mission of winning back the majority and it was clear from the way that the vote occurred that 99% of our members are focused on that, so it’s time to move on.”

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Cheney Is Not Alone In Her Opposition To Trump

Liz Cheney is not alone in her belief that Donald Trump is the death knell for the Republican Party.

A recent report from Reuters says that more than 100 former Republican officials are threatening to start a third party if the GOP does not see the error of its ways and break ties with Trump.

The group, “A Call for American Renewal,” is made up of former Bush White House Officials, Members of Congress, and others known for their never-Trumper stances.

Cheney is also not the only House member who voted to impeach Trump that will have a primary challenge in 2022. Of the ten members that voted to impeach, five have have challengers

However, others who have criticized Trump in the past were silent on the removal of Cheney. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell had no comment for reporters when asked about Cheney, and did not say anything on the Senate floor Wednesday morning.

Utah Senator Mitt Romney, also a fierce critic of Trump tweeted Wednesday morning, “Expelling Liz Cheney from leadership won’t gain the GOP one additional voter, but it will cost us quite a few.”

RELATED: Senator Mike Lee: Gas Prices, Inflation Due To ‘Excessive Government Spending’

What’s Next For Liz Cheney?

Even with two challengers for her seat next year, Cheney says she fully intends to run for re-election in 2022. She also told NBC News that a presidential run of her own was not out of the question. 

Until then, she says she is, “very focused on making sure that our party becomes again, a party that stands for truth, and stands for fundamental principles that are conservative. And mostly stands for the Constitution and I won’t let the former President or anybody else unravel the democracy. Whatever it takes.” 

But is Liz Cheney missing the direction the Republican Party is taking, based on what the voters said they wanted by voting for Donald Trump and continuing to support him? It is certainly making her the media’s new best friend.

Have the folks in Wyoming and the rest of the nation said loudly enough that they are tired of the go-along-to-get-along attitude of old school Republicans who are viewed as caving in to Democrats, and are looking for people with new blood and a fire in the belly? 

Liz Cheney may have won the battle by being the one currently in office, but Donald Trump may win the war.

 

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Trump And GOP Leadership Endorse Replacement For Liz Cheney

Anti-Trump Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) could face a vote on whether or not she will lose her leadership role in the House as GOP Conference Chair as early as next week.

It’s becoming clear that Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) will be the primary challenger to Cheney for the Conference Chair position.

Stefanik has been calling House GOP members in order to drum up support, and she’s gotten support from the biggest name around.

On Wednesday, Trump officially endorsed Stefanik to replace Cheney as the GOP Conference Chair. 

RELATED: Nancy Pelosi Gives ‘Lynne Cheney’ Praise For ‘Her Courage And Patriotism’

Cheney’s Clash With Republicans

Liz Cheney has been at odds with many of her fellow Republicans since she voted to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

Cheney promptly blamed Trump for the violence, and has stated on a number of occasions that the GOP needs to distance themselves from Trump after Trump continued to claim that the 2020 presidential election was fraudulent. 

In February, Cheney avoided being removed as Conference Chair position, but was censured by several Republican committees in Wyoming.

She has continued to be outspoken about her opposition to Trump having any sway in the Republican Party.

The dust ups between Cheney and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy also began in February.

When asked at a news conference about whether Trump should speak at the annual CPAC conference that was being held the following weekend, McCarthy said, “Yes, he should.”

When the question was posed to Cheney, she stated, “That’s up to CPAC. I’ve been clear on my views about President Trump. I don’t believe that he should be playing a role in the future of the party or the country.”  

RELATED: Trump Posts First Video On His Own Communications Platform, Launched After Twitter and Facebook Bans

Cheney’s Views On Trump Could Pave The Way For Stefanik

Liz Cheney’s steadfast opinion that the GOP should have nothing to do with Trump could pave the way for the new school of Republicans. 

But as GOP leaders attempt to unite the party in advance of the 2022 midterms, many are describing Cheney and her comments about Trump to be a “liability.”

House Leader McCarthy was caught on a hot mic Tuesday making the comment that, “I think she’s got real problems. I’ve had it with … I’ve had it with her. You know, I’ve lost confidence.” 

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) is also supporting replacing Cheney with Stefanik. A spokesperson for Scalise stated:

“House Republicans need to be solely focused on taking back the House in 2022 and fighting against Speaker Pelosi and President Biden’s radical socialist agenda, and Elise Stefanik is strongly committed to doing that, which is why Whip Scalise has pledged to support her for Conference Chair.”

Stefanik is a fourth term Congresswoman, representing upstate New York’s 21st district.

RELATED: Trump On 2024: Supporters Will Be ‘Very Happy’ When I Make Announcement

Cheney Getting Support… From Nancy Pelosi

Not everyone is on board with Liz Cheney’s removal from the Conference Chair position.

Utah Senator Mitt Romney came out in support of Cheney on Monday. Romney lauded Cheney as “a person of conscience,” and that “she refuses to lie,” referring to the Capitol riot.

Romney continued, “As one of my Republican Senate colleagues said to me following my impeachment vote: ‘I wouldn’t want to be a member of a group that punished someone for following their conscience.”

But Romney may not be the support Cheney could use. Romney was roundly booed at the Utah GOP convention over the weekend. The convention was attended by more than 2,000 Republican delegates. 

Cheney also received strong support from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

While calling her by the wrong name, Pelosi commended Cheney’s “courage” and “patriotism.”

The Republican Party needs to decide one way or the other if Donald Trump has a future with the party. They will find out in 2022 if they made the right decision.

 

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GOP Divide Shows No Sign Of Letting Up As McCarthy Rips Cheney For Attacking Trump

The divide between the two wings of the Republican Party was as evident as ever at a party policy retreat held in Florida.

As House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy emphasizes the need for the GOP to be united, the division between McCarthy himself and GOP Chair Rep. Liz Cheney will not be an incentive for others with differing visions of the future of the party to come together for 2022.

According to a report from Politico, while former President Trump was not at the policy retreat, his presence was very much felt in the rift between the anti-Trump Cheney and McCarthy’s calls for unity.

RELATED: Schumer: Even With Manchin Opposing, ‘Reconciliation Is On The Table’ For Infrastructure Bill 

McCarthy’s Frustration Comes Through

In an interview with Politico, McCarthy was asked about bringing the party together while Cheney – the third-ranking Republican in the House – continues to attack an extremely popular Trump.

McCarthy said, “There’s a responsibility, if you’re gonna be in leadership, leaders eat last, and when leaders try to go out, and not work as one team, it creates difficulties.”

In a telling exchange, McCarthy said that he had spoken to Cheney about playing down some of her comments. When he was asked if he thought she had taken the advice is answer was, “You be the judge.”

That wasn’t all. At a later press conference, McCarthy demurred when asked if Cheney was fit to lead the GOP. 

GOP Rift Is Nothing New

The ink on the Articles of Impeachment were barely dry when Liz Cheney began to lay blame for the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol building on Donald Trump.

In a tweet on Jan. 6 following the violence at the Capitol, Cheney said, “There is no question that the President formed the mob, the President incited the mob. He lit the flame.”

Other GOP members of Congress also joined in on pinning the blame on Trump.

Over in the Senate, the same occurred. Those that many Trump supporters view as “RINOs” (Republican in name only) were also quick to blame Trump. Then Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) immediately following the violence in Washington D.C. stated that, 

“The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the President and other powerful people. And they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding of the first branch of the Federal Government which they did not like. But we pressed on,”

RELATED: Republicans Pressure John Kerry To Resign After NYT Leaked Iran Audio – What We Know So Far

GOP Facing Classic Clash Of Establishment Vs. Young Guns

What is happening within the Republican Party may be nothing more than a simple case of the Establishment Old Guard clashing with relatively younger, more often newly-elected young guns of the party.

These latter are tired of the establishment status quo and are not afraid to take on the Democrats. 

The young guns are equally not afraid to take on members of their own party. On Monday, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene said that not inviting Trump to the retreat was “stupid.”

Greene argued, “Remember when Republicans lost the House in 2018 because a bunch of them distanced themselves from President Trump? Not inviting President Trump to the GOP retreat is the same stupid behavior. Funny how they don’t understand a record # of votes and support of any R President.”

Greene is among a handful of Republican lawmakers, including Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Lauren Boebert (R-CO), who are not afraid to call out the senior members of the GOP.

Based on every known measure, Cheney is in the wrong as it regards Trump’s standing among GOP voters.

A February CNBC poll showed that 74% of Republicans want Donald Trump to stay politically active in some way, and 48% want him to remain the perceived head of the Republican Party. 

The Democrats have problems of their own in managing the AOC wing of their party, but a sizable GOP rift could bring them together quick.

The bottom line for Republicans is that Trump or no Trump, 2022 is fast approaching. 

 

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McConnell Vs. Trump! Warring Wings Of GOP May Face Off In Alaska Senate Race

The Senate Leadership Fund (SLF) announced on Friday that it will support Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) in her re-election campaign.

The group is aligned with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who has said that he will “Absolutely” support Murkowski’s re-election bid.

Murkowski, often described as a moderate Republican, voted to convict former President Donald Trump during his second impeachment trial in January.

After her vote, the Alaska Republican Party voted to censure Murkowski for her conviction vote.

They also said that they would recruit a Republican challenger – which could set up a head-to-head matchup between the establishment wing of the GOP and Trumpworld.

RELATED: Republicans Release Video Of Migrants Caught Crossing The Border Right Behind Them

Race Will Be Portrayed As Experience Vs. Outsider

The 2022 midterm elections may come down to a simple matter of who decides the future direction of the Republican Party.

The McConnell-backed SLF had a war chest last election cycle of $475 million will now throw it’s weight behind not just Murkowski, but could also back a number of establishment incumbents like her.

SLF President Steven Law said, “Alaska needs the kind of experienced representation that Lisa Murkowski provides in the United States Senate. Whether fighting for Alaskan interests like expanding energy production and protecting fisheries, or advancing conservative priorities by confirming judges and cutting taxes, her strong leadership is vitally important to Alaska’s future.” 

In response to the SLF statement, Mary Ann Pruitt, advisor to Kelly Tshibaka – who is running against Murkowski in the GOP primary – released a statement saying, “It’s just like D.C. insiders to ignore the voices of Alaska voters to protect one of their own.”

Kelly Tshibaka is positioning herself as an outsider, saying in a video of her intent to run that Murkowski was “so out of touch” for voting to convict Trump after he had already left office.

Prior to her current run for Senate, Tshibaka has worked in the office of inspector general for the U.S. Postal service, Federal Trade Commission, and Department of Justice.

She resigned her position in Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy’s administration to concentrate on her run for the Senate. 

RELATED: Kathy Barnette Is Fighting To Become The First Black Female Republican U.S. Senator

Republicans Picking Sides

Within the Republican Party, it is starting to look like a matter of picking sides. That began to be apparent during the waning days of the Trump administration.

A new breed of Trump-supporting, outspoken Republican Congress members like Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene and Colorado Congresswoman Lauren Boebert came along.

Opposite that Trump wing stand establishment Republicans like Rep. Liz Cheney and McConnell.

From almost right after his second impeachment trial, Trump has had an eye on supporting any primary challenger of several members of Congress who had voted to impeach him.

It was thought that, should any of those Congress members received a primary challenge, Trump supporters would be fired up enough to support the challengers as well. 

Cheney garnered a primary challenge almost immediately following her impeachment vote. Several others have as well. Nearly every Republican Senator who had voted to convict Trump was censured by their local party. 

RELATED: Report: Biden Creating Commission To Study Court-Packing

Establishment GOP Should Know Trump Is Ready And Waiting For 2022

Donald Trump is already in position to endorse candidates and be a major player in the 2022 midterm election.

His new Save America PAC has, in the words of those in the know, ‘gargantuan’ amounts of cash. 

He has already began endorsing candidates, including Sens. Tim Scott (R-SC), John Kennedy (R-LA), Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster (R), and former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in her run for Governor of Arkansas.

Trump most recently endorsed Alabama Congressman Mo Brooks in his bid for the Senate, and America First Senator Rand Paul.

No word yet if Trump will be traveling to Alaska to give out an endorsement to Kelly Tshibaka. However, both wings of the party seem to be flush with cash, and 2022 could prove to be an interesting year.

 

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White House Considering Taxing You For Every Mile You Drive

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said on Friday that, among the avenues on the table being considered to help pay for a massive infrastructure proposal, is the possibility of vehicle mileage tax.

Since the passage of the $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill, there has been talk of a multi-trillion spending plan for infrastructure

Buttigieg said, “When you think about infrastructure, it’s a classic example of the kind of investment that has a return on that investment. That’s one of many reasons why we think this is so important. This is a jobs vision as much as it is an infrastructure vision, a climate vision and more.”

One of the ways to pay for it could be to tax drivers for every mile they drive. 

“A so-called vehicle-miles-traveled tax or mileage tax, whatever you want to call it, could be a way to do it,” Buttigieg said.

“I’m hearing a lot of appetite to make sure that there are sustainable funding streams.” 

Biden will travel to Pittsburgh next week to lay out what is expected to be a $3 to $4 trillion proposal. He stated during his first press conference on Thursday that infrastructure, “both physical and technological,” would be his next major initiative

RELATED: Congressional Democrats Have No Business Dictating State Tax Policy

Biden’s Infrastructure Plan

Biden’s infrastructure plan could include, according to Business Insider:

  • Clean energy deployment and the development of 5G
  • Rural broadband
  • One million “affordable and energy-efficient” housing units
  • $1 trillion in spending on roads, bridges, electric vehicles, rail lines, and improvements to the grid.

RELATED: When It Comes To Election ‘Reforms,’ The Left Are The Ones Busting Norms

Build America Bonds?

Another possible funding source Buttigieg and the President might be looking at is an Obama-era idea called Build America Bonds.

Per CNBC, these are a special class of municipal bonds where the interest costs are subsidized by the U.S. Treasury. 

The federal government used these in the 2008 bailout era, and phased them out in 2010.

Buttigieg also mentioned the idea of a national infrastructure bank.

RELATED: Mitt Romney Is Awarded JFK ‘Profile In Courage Award’ For Impeachment Vote

Mileage Tax Pros And Cons

When it comes to pros and cons, there are a few of each.

For some, this type of use-tax is more fair. After all, those who use a resource most should pay more for it, right?

A mileage tax would also bring electric vehicle drivers into the mix, since those vehicles do not pay into the highway trust fund.

On the con side, many Americans don’t want the government to track a driver’s whereabouts and movements

There’s also questions of fairness. Should people be punished if they live further away from their work? 

And even for those on the right who prefer use-taxes (as opposed to general levies, which are paid even if an individual doesn’t partake in the associated services), the question may be one of federalism. 

One could prefer a state-based use tax – after all, then the funds go to the roads in their state. But is there any guarantee the federal government will use the revenue fairly, or will some areas receive more benefits and others are left high and dry?

Another maybe not so readily seen consequence, COVID-19 has proven to a lot of employers that their employees can work from home. At a time when Americans are getting vaccinated and feel safe to leave their homes to physically go to a job, school, etc., a mileage tax might have many people rethinking work-from-home as an alternative to paying to drive.

This can also be a pro argument for environmental advocates. Generally, if you want less of something, you tax it. If you tax travel, you will get less of it. That means less vehicle exhaust. 

In his comments to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Buttigieg said, “There is near-universal recognition that a broader recovery will require a national commitment to fix and transform America’s infrastructure.” 

What do you think?

POLL: Which would you prefer - a Mileage Tax, or the current Gas Tax?

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