I was the speaker at a large Republican event recently and, inevitably, the grievance was aired in the Q&A portion: “Where’s the Republican Party? They are worthless. They won’t do anything.”
This is one of the most common refrains on talk radio. Glenn Beck does it almost daily. Steve Deace and his team never stop. Rush used to do it regularly. And therefore, a lot of conservatives and traditionalist Americans think it is true. But is it?
Exhibit number one in this case is always the failure to repeal Obamacare. That’s where the line of accusation really kicked in.
They had the House, the Senate, and a president who would sign Obamacare repeal and they did nothing!
This narrative is wholly wrong, however. Contrary to the narrative, the GOP-controlled House did pass a full repeal of Obamacare in 2017—just as promised. Republicans almost unanimously supported it. It went to the Senate, where three Republicans voted against it. Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) had not campaigned on repealing Obamacare, however. Collins is from a liberal state and had always supported keeping Obamacare, so there was no broken promise there. But Senator John McCain had campaigned and fundraised every time, including his most recent election, on repealing Obamacare. It was McCain who single-handedly betrayed those who wanted to repeal Obamacare, not the entire party. It failed 51-49, because of one turncoat vote based on what appeared to be the petty reason that he hated President Trump.
The Glenn Beck version that represents many people’s idea of events is just flat wrong. And this is one of the foundational points for the “Republicans do nothing” criticism.
But what about one of the ultimate swamp creatures, Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)?
Mitch McConnell is the problem. He can’t be trusted!
McConnell is maybe the single favorite bogeyman for those who say the Republican Party is the problem. But NPR described his efforts to repeal Obamacare this way: “McConnell, who seemed to exhaust every trick in the procedural playbook to get to this point [of voting], seemed surprised and undercut by the result.” Right, because McCain stabbed him in the back, too. Nevertheless, virtually every judge that President Trump nominated, McConnell pushed through the Senate confirmation process, including changing rules and playing hardball. Even now, he is holding together every GOP Senator to oppose the Left’s craziness. McConnell has been there too long and is hardly trustworthy, but neither is he the locus of the problem.
But the election was stolen and the Republicans didn’t do anything!
You sure about that? The Republican-run Arizona Senate ordered a full forensic audit of Maricopa County’s 2.1 million votes, the most comprehensive election audit in the history of the United States, and they stood firm against withering, egregious media attacks and smears almost daily to conclude the audit. There are two other states conducting further election audits against fierce opposition.
And so far, 14 Republican states have passed tightened election laws. Did you read about Georgia losing Major League Baseball’s All-Star game? That’s because they tightened up Voter ID and vote monitoring. These changes, and more are coming as the RNC and state parties are creating plans to more aggressively monitor and challenge voting in real time in future elections. That’s not nothing.
But what about now? The country is going down the toilet and Republicans aren’t doing anything!
Frustration with the direction of our country is understandable, but again the fire is aimed at the wrong people. Republicans have held unanimously against HR 1, against the $3.5 trillion in spending and on other terrible initiatives. Since the Senate is 50-50, neither party can afford a defection. Yet it is the out-of-power GOP that has stopped every bad idea they’ve had the power to stop. That’s not exactly nothing.
Interestingly, it is the Democrats who cannot keep their party together. Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) are the Democrats’ equivalent of John McCain and Mitt Romney to their base. And don’t think for a minute that the Left’s most fervent believers are not saying the same things on the other side about their two “squishes.” AOC and her squad are obviously frustrated they can’t ram through their disastrous schemes.
Part of the problem is a basic misunderstanding of political parties. In a sense parties, like a representative Republic as a whole, are mirroring their supporters. And they are necessarily broad. So the problem really is all of us. It’s just a lot easier to blame someone else. The American people let it get to this point.
But this is where we are. And the full stop reality is that the Republican Party is the only remaining American institution not under control of leftists and anti-Americans. The media, academia, public schools, Hollywood, the music industry, every federal government department, most major non-profits, and now, Silicon Valley tech giants, are all controlled by the Left.
Given that, I often stand amazed that Republicans can ever win anything. But we do. And it is because the GOP is the only organization that has structure in place, from the city to the state to D.C., that will fight the destruction of America. It is far from perfect, and there are plenty of disappointing individual Republicans, but that is the nature of political parties. And given what is arrayed against it, the party has been surprisingly effective.
Attacking the Republican Party, not individual Republicans, is equivalent to fragging your only defense force. In the end, that only serves the interests of the Left by depressing voter turnout—one of our strengths. Those who want to save our country would do well to aim their fire at the real enemies of America, not those on their own side who want to save it.
Rod Thomson is an author, former journalist, past Salem radio host and ABC TV commentator and Founder of The Thomson Group. Twice banned on TikTok. Follow him on Instagram. Like Rod on Facebook.