David Cole at Black Man with a Gun talks about something which, hopefully, most of us have all realized about politicians in general, not just pseudo-republicans — namely that they only care about maintaining their place at the trough — in Beautiful Loser.
The recent events in Washington have highlighted a recurring thought of mine. As we watch Republican after Republican run away from President Trump and his agenda, I keep hearing political commentators saying that “Republicans don’t know how to win.” I don’t think that’s true at all. After all, you don’t maintain a seat in the U.S. Senate for 35 years if you don’t know how to win. You’ve actually been winning for some time.
The problem is that when you and I think of winning, we’re thinking of advancing conservative principles as they pertain to government. And in that sense, we can all agree that they are huge losers. But to the modern Vichy Republican, winning means maintaining their position as DC elite, not preserving the Constitution or the Republic it created. Consider these words by South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem:
“There are a lot of Americans whose frustration has been building for many years. Republicans have had opportunities to fix our healthcare system, reform immigration, and get our fiscal house in order, among many other things. Republicans have had chances to deliver for the American people. But we haven’t followed through…Republicans have not been disciplined enough to do the hard work. The American people need us to fight for them on a daily basis, not just 30 to 60 days before an election.”
She’s not wrong. But unfortunately, to these Vichy Republicans it is not only acceptable to come in second place, it is actually preferable. As the minority party, they aren’t expected to produce any results. All they need to do is shake their fists at the sky, and mouth some conservative words until they inevitably lose to the Democrat majority. Then they take the video of their “fiery takedown” of the Democrats and weave it into their next campaign ad, so they can tell you how they “fought the good fight” and how they’ll keep fighting for you (against insurmountable odds) if you’ll just vote for them one more time.
Take the current iteration of H.R. 38, the national concealed carry reciprocity bill. If it sounds familiar, it’s because it keeps getting recycled every Congress, where it fails to pass every single time…yet is used as cover for Vichy Republicans to bolster their pro-2A bona fides without having to produce any real change. Even in 2017, when Republicans held both houses of Congress and the Oval Office, our own Republican “leadership” couldn’t find the cojones to pass it; after repeated badmouthing* from Congressman Thomas Massie (Republican founder and chair of the Congressional Second Amendment Caucus) Republican Senate Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell folded right up and let it die in committee.
If the GOP had any intention of advancing the conservative agenda, they’d have passed that bill. But that would have landed them on the bad side of people they want to stay in good with…and that’s not you. It’s the other politicians’ good graces they need to keep winning, and that means they need to lose. They know you’ll be there for them come election day, because where else are you going to go? Sure, there will be some voter pushback, and some Republicans will lose some elections. But not all of them. There will still be Vichy Republicans enjoying the good life in DC, so who are you calling loser?