For good reason, it is rare to call any politician a “hero,” but who in The Swamp could be seen in a better light right now than the 20 Republicans who fought the status quo, demanded congressional change, and won this past week?
The conservative congressmen and women (full list of names below) held out on supporting now-Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) all week, after working behind the scenes since the summertime, to ensure that Republicans would actually have the tools and rules necessary to effectively disrupt the way Washington works for the better.
Not only did these individuals withstand pressure and insults such as “terrorists,” “enemies,” and comparisons to the Taliban from their House colleagues this past week, but they also stood against outside criticism from those who thought it better to simply vote in McCarthy without question.
These representatives knew what they wanted, knew what their voters expected of them, and worked tirelessly for it. The debate and temporary gridlock were a moral and political necessity.
Consider that all week long, the GOP establishment claimed that the anti-McCarthy crowd had no specific demands. As this author previously wrote, that idea was nonsense.
The group’s fundamental complaint was that the federal government has grown in scope and power thus harming the quality of life in America.
In order to stop that decline, these 20 individuals wanted explicit changes in the House as well as assurances regarding the makeup of certain congressional committees.
Ultimately, in order to support McCarthy, the majority of this group needed to have confidence that the new Congress would put forth conservative legislation, have the means to block bad bills, and authority to hold corrupt actors inside and outside the government accountable. Many had differing ideas as to how to do that, some even saying they could never support McCarthy, but it was clear that as a whole, they weren’t seeking change for the mere sake of doing something different.
In turn, establishment allies wanted the American people to believe that Congress was in a “hostage” situation. Why? Well, because these conservatives dared to demand that Congress act conservatively with guardrails in place.
The holdouts, we were told, had no desire to discuss anything and were blocking the GOP from governing.
In reality, those who were refusing to vote for McCarthy were arguing their ideas to anybody who would listen. Behind closed doors, they were making deals to get their desired results as explained to the public.
Saturday morning, after 15 rounds of voting, the American people can now see which compromises McCarthy made in order to swing votes his way.
That fact alone raises the question of how exactly could McCarthy make concessions on stipulations that were supposedly non-existent. It’s unlikely those most vocal against these negotiated agreements will ever answer that one. Courtesy of Zerohedge, here’s a partial list of what we’ll see out of the People’s House this year:
- As has been reported, it will only take a single congressperson, acting in what is known as a Jeffersonian Motion, to move to remove the Speaker if he or she goes back on their word or policy agenda.
- A “Church” style committee will be convened to look into the weaponization of the FBI and other government organizations (presumably the CIA, the subject of the original Church Committee) against the American people.
- Term limits will be put up for a vote.
- [Spending] Bills presented to Congress will be single subject, not omnibus with all the attendant earmarks, and there will be a 72-hour minimum period to read them.
- The Texas Border Plan will be put before Congress. From The Hill: “The four-pronged plan aims to ‘Complete Physical Border Infrastructure,’ ‘Fix Border Enforcement Policies,’ ‘Enforce our Laws in the Interior’ and ‘Target Cartels & Criminal Organizations.’”
- COVID mandates will be ended, as will all funding for them, including so-called “emergency funding.”
- Budget bills would stop the endless increases in the debt ceiling and hold the Senate accountable for the same.
There are other points, such as capping fiscal year spending in 2024 at 2022 levels across the board, but none of this should come as a surprise. These requests were all known throughout the week.
In light of it all, the question really should be why the other 200-plus Republicans supporting McCarthy weren’t also demanding these items in the first place.
For some reason, Republicans fretted that this entire standoff would end with Speaker Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY). The base was told it was a national embarrassment for Republicans everywhere — as if the GOP establishment doesn’t embarrass itself on its own plenty.
A Democratic speaker was realistically never going to occur because it would have been political suicide for any Republican to lend support to Jeffries.
Still, despite threats, name-calling, and more — these 20 did not budge. Perhaps it is because conservatives in the House who want to do more than simply provide lip service have been treated pretty badly by the party over the years — especially the Freedom Caucus.
Since 2015, folks like ex-Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) have called the Freedom Caucus far-right kooks, lunatics, and other denigrating names.
In this latest battle against their moderate party members, it would have been easy to throw in the towel.
Yet as Congressman Dan Bishop (R-NC) explained in a statement via Twitter, he “came to Washington to change the status quo.” He and his other co-holdouts didn’t come to The Beltway to go-along and get-along. Bishop worked with the others to “cause the Republican Conference to reform rules and procedures, commit to specific policy strategies, and improve the distribution of conservative voices across key committees.”
My statement on today's agreement: pic.twitter.com/wgedesD4LG
— Rep. Dan Bishop (@RepDanBishop) January 6, 2023
It should be noted that the rules package will be voted on in the coming week. That package will heavily decide how the new Congress works, but it is likely to pass given the GOP majority.
As mentioned, the term “hero” never really should be used for politicians because they so often disappoint. It is likely these 20 Republicans praised in this column will fail the American people at various points in the future.
Above all else, they still need to put in the actual work to defeat the Left in all its forms. Nobody should be putting their faith in the U.S. government — least of all Congress — to save the country.
Yet the first step toward that end could be the reforms introduced this week thanks to those who bucked the party.
In order to have a truly conservative Congress and federal government, there is much more work to do. It will take years, and more likely decades, to roll back the administrative state and stem the tide of social degradation advanced by The Uniparty.
For now, though, the 20 Republicans who held out in order to secure the first meaningful reform in decades can be found here:
🇺🇸#Heroes@RepBoebert @RepMattGaetz @RepAndyBiggsAZ@EliCraneAZ@RepBobGood@RepRosendale@RepDanBishop@Brecheen4OK @RepCloudTX @Rep_Clyde@RepGosar@byrondonalds@RepAndyHarrisMD@VoteAPL@RepMaryMiller@RepRalphNorman@AndyOgles@RepScottPerry@RepChipRoy@SelfForCongress pic.twitter.com/kC9bETRCUY
— Jewels Jones (@JewelsJonesLive) January 7, 2023
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.