Rep. Tom McClintock's opinion "Let us reason together" in the Oct. 19 Sierra Star is a desperate attempt at damage control. His Tea Party shutdown gambit backfired and now he is shifting blame. Dad said when you break something, own up to it like a man. Don't blame your brother.
Tom would be wise to heed that advice. It demonstrates character. Character should not just be a campaign slogan. It is something you abide by particularly after you are elected.
About 70% believe Republicans are putting politics before the welfare of the country. About 53% of Americans believe shutting down the government should not be used to extort concessions and that Republicans are solely responsible for it. Had 53% of the public supported the shutdown, would Tom McClintock have expended so much effort disowning it or would he be crowing about the Herculean efforts he and Tea Party Republicans engaged in to make it happen. I think we know the answer to that.
How different would McClintock's opinion piece be if the polls were in the GOP's favor? Would it look like this?
Tea Party friends, Americans and countrymen, this was no small undertaking but we prevailed. As far back as February 2013, a loosely knit team of freedom loving Americans led by former Attorney General Edwin Meese gathered in a secret meeting at the capitol to plot a strategy. Out of that came "the blueprint to defund Obamacare." We, the House Republicans tried 40+ times to take down Obamacare. Here are some of the things we tried:
Jan 19, 2011, repeal the entire law; Feb. 19, bar the IRS from enforcing the law; May 3, repeal financing for state insurance exchanges; Oct. 13, ban money for abortions procedures; Feb. 1, 2012, repeal the long-term care program; March 29, repeal the entire law again; June 7, repeal the medical device tax; June 11, repeal the entire law again; Dec. 20, remove financing for several health care provisions; Mar 21, 2013, repeal the entire law again; July 17, delay employer and individual mandates.
But now we meant business. One action in that blueprint is "Conservatives should not approve a CR unless it defunds Obamacare ." Without Congressional CR approval the government does not get continued funding and it shuts down. You can read it for yourself at our FreedomWorks website http://www. freedomworks.org/blog/ryanriebe/joint-letter-on-sequester-savings.
No small thanks should be given to our benefactors, the Koch brothers, without whom none of this would be possible. nytimes.com/2013/10/06/us/a-federal-budget-crisis-months-in-the-planning.html?pagewanted=all&_r=2&0).
We also crafted a defunding Obamacare "toolkit" which you can find at our Tea Party Patriots website teapartypatriots.org/2013/09/get-your-defunding-obamacare-toolkit).
On Sept. 20, thanks to the Koch brothers $200+ million, the billionaire funded grassroots Tea Party, demanded a repeal of the entire Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare law, as a condition for preventing a government shutdown.
It wasn't easy. The Senate returned a clean CR bill to the House. Had Speaker Boehner allowed the House to vote on the Senate bill, the shut down would have ended. Thanks to his fortitude and the Tea Party caucus, we kept the shutdown going.
Was I part of this shutdown effort? You betcha. I'm Tea Party to the bone. Here's what I said at the Eldorado Hills town hall on Aug. 14, 2013: " We approach the end of the fiscal year on September 30th and the authorization for the federal government to spend money expires, we face the prospect of a government shutdown if something doesn't happen, and that something is a continuing resolution but I am not going to vote for any more continuing resolutions that simply kick that can down the road.
Now, I'll make one exception to that, and that is if we can get a provision in the continuing resolution that defunds Obamacare this year.
Be careful what you wish for. Grover Norgquist said, "My goal is to cut government in half in 25 years, to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub." This sentiment is at the forefront of the Republican and particularly the Tea Party agenda. The mountain business community is reeling from the shutdown (see Sierra Star "Shutdown continues businesses reacts"). This is just a taste of what a Republican and Tea Party America would look like.