We have been hearing rumors about the upcoming Republican Civil War for a few years now. The first rumblings came after the Tea Party endorsed candidates in were elected in 2010. We soon realized that the breadth of the ideological political range of the GOP created problems for Speaker of the House John Boehner getting the GOP together to pass important legislation. That included legisaltion such as the Debt Ceiling Crises of 2011 and 2013, along with the Government Shutdown of 2013.
With the election of Donald Trump as President, the buzz of breaking the GOP apart has increased a couple of notches. Recently ultra conservative activist and former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon has declared a “Season of War” against the GOP establishment. Many interprets the Trump/Bannon’s agenda as extreme, including being anti-minority, pro-isolation and returning to “Trickle-Down”Economc theory. Bannon has been searching for candidates who will run against current GOP Senators up for re-election in 2018.
President Trump’s feelings about Senator John McCain are well known. As a candidate he stated that McCain was not a war hero because he was captured. His latest rants against McCain erupted when the Senator dramatically voted against the Senate’s latest Health Care proposal.
McCain wants the Senate to return to “Regular Order” when creating legislation including letting committees with members of both parties write legislation; then having the full Senate debate and amend it. That is not the process Mitch McConnell used for either of the recent Senate Health Care proposals. The Committee McConnell used included only male republicans. Will McConnell use the same techniques on the Budget and Tax Reform?
Reed was an early Trump supporter. He has not disagreed with the President on any significant issue. He voted to approve the President’s budget proposal which ends the taxpayer deductions for state and local taxes.
At times Reed tries to look moderate. He is the Co-Chair of the Problem Solvers caucus. He tells us that he supports using “regular order” to create a bi-partisan health care bill, although he voted and advocated for the “mean” House Health Care proposal.
The tensions in the Republican Party have been increasing. The 2018 elections will either move the GOP farther to the right, or have it become more moderate. Are more republican voters going to support the revolutionary visions of Steve Bannon, or will they desire to return to a more orderly legislative process that John McCain longs for?
Where does Rep. Tom Reed really stand? Is he a McCain Republican, or a Bannon Republican? The constituents of the NY23rd have the right to know.