If it could be said that politicians almost never say what they mean and rarely mean what they say, then the unofficial label of duplicitous liar (or more apropos, b.s. artist) should be removed from Florida Republican Senator Rick Scott for good.
In a political day and age when former President Donald Trump continues to draw criticism and scorn from the self-appointed keepers of verbal decorum for his unabashed fondness for not only naming names but openly tossing out insults, it’s becoming more and more acceptable for elected representatives and senators (at least on the Republican side) to call out the Washington ruling class and to demand changes be made to the way things have always been done in the nation’s capital.
Why? Because the Washington establishment’s way led to a national debt that’s now over $31 trillion and going up, up, up by the day, a U.S. military hierarchy that cares more about “social justice” and “climate change” than it does protecting the nation’s vital interests and killing enemies and has allowed “woke” culture to infiltrate and destroy what once was considered the most exceptional constitution-based system in history.
This didn’t happen overnight, and the Washington establishment has resisted adjustment for as long as there’s been a government positioned along the banks of the Potomac River. But the rot has accelerated in recent decades, paving the way for a bombastic outsider like Trump and for normally mild-mannered gentlemen like Rick Scott to blow open the doors to a more straightforward conversation on what it means to set policy in America today.
Why sugarcoat it? In a piece titled “Washington liars will not stop us from rescuing America”, Senator (Rick) Scott wrote at the Washington Examiner the other day:
“What [the public does] NOT know is what we Republicans are going to do about [policy]. And the stunning part is that this is on purpose. That is the current strategy of many Republicans in Washington, to be against the crazy Democrats only and never outline any plans of what we are for or what we will do. And if you dare step out of line and suggest that we give people something to vote for, they attack you, and they partner with the Democrats to twist your words and trash you and tell you to be quiet.
“But I have good news — a new day is coming. Republicans and conservatives all over this country are demanding that we stand up, boldly defend our values, and fight like hell to save this country. It may take a little bit longer for those in Washington to get the message, but it is coming. A new era in which Republicans actually give the voters a positive reason to vote for them is coming...
“Everyone says compromise is crucial in Washington. That’s fine. But it’s about time we stop compromising our principles and start making the Democrats compromise theirs. The old Washington establishment Republican path of never having a vision is over, it’s dying. A new wave of bold and aggressive Republicans who will stand up and fight is demanding change from our leaders in Washington. It is happening, and it will happen. Count on it.”
Count on it? Conservatives certainly hope Scott is right, but to count on it? This may be asking a little too much if history is a guide.
“Cocaine Mitch” McConnell has headed the GOP’s senate caucus for almost sixteen years now and there are hardly any signs that he’ll lose his grip on the minority party’s top job in the new Congress, either. There are a few senators who’ve spoken up recently – Scott and Missouri’s Josh Hawley immediately come to mind – though there doesn’t appear to be any other Republican who is even close to commanding a majority of votes if he or she were to challenge the Kentuckian for supremacy.
Who is to blame? Well, for starters, Alaska, with its stupid ranked choice voting system, just reelected permanent establishmentarian Sen. Lisa Murkowski, and she’s most definitely a status quo kind of gal. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania opted for a literally half-brained Democrat (John Fetterman) rather than an outsider Republican (Mehmet Oz) who might have thrown his weight behind a McConnell successor. And Arizona, with its indisputably corrupted election, turned away boat-rocker Blake Masters, a man who had openly campaigned on his disdain for McConnell and the do-nothing GOP leaders.
So if Rick Scott claims those “do nothing, say nothing” days are over, call me skeptical. There is the Georgia runoff election next Tuesday which pits Trump-endorsed non-politician Herschel Walker vs. standard liberal slimeball (“I’m a minority, so I’m entitled”) Democrat Raphael Warnock. Some of us get the gist that Walker wouldn’t bow to the establishment, but he might not even get an opportunity to test his fortitude.
As Scott alluded to in his column, earlier this year he introduced a 12-point plan known as “Rescue America” which proposed such revolutionary (NOT!) concepts as making sure everyone pays a smidgen of income taxes so as to have proverbial “skin in the game” and also required federal programs to sunset every five years, forcing Congress to do its job and renew the worthwhile ones or let them lapse.
Democrats didn’t wait to read the text of Scott’s forward-thinking plan before claiming it was yet another Republican ploy to cut or eliminate the big entitlement monstrosities. Forget the fact that there must be thousands of “other” federal programs that are automatically renewed in continuing resolutions or omnibus spending bills annually – essentially given another year of life despite long outliving their purpose – Democrats, and McConnell, simultaneously assaulted the Floridian for stepping out of line and daring to offer something new and different.
In essence, Scott said what he meant and meant what he said. Ever since that time, Scott has defended not only his ideas, but also the very American principle that Congress is supposed to debate issues, attain consensus and pass improved laws to reflect new realities. The establishment wouldn’t go along with it.
Add the fact Donald Trump publicly commended Scott for his willingness to speak out against McConnell, and the “Rescue America” plan was dead in the water as far as the establishment was concerned. The eternally suspicious, envious and jealous ruling class always resented Trump for his no-holds-barred assault on the Washington bluebloods. If you doubt it, reread their comments after Trump’s inauguration nearly six years ago.
Scott is correct in naming both parties’ leaders as the root of the problem, but his perpetual challenge is finding a way to do anything about it. Poll after poll revealed (before the election) that Americans are wholly dissatisfied with the direction of the country but they still voted in near-gridlock in Congress, leaving broken-down senile old goat president Joe Biden to declare that he wasn’t going to do anything different now that Republicans will control the House.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced she was stepping down from the Democrat House leadership, but whomever replaces her – probably New York’s Hakeem Jeffries – isn’t likely to mean much of an ideological or tactical improvement in conservatives’ minds. Democrats will fight like heck to ensure that Republicans won’t make headway on reversing their disastrous policy victories of the past two years.
And it’s hard to generate enthusiasm for a Kevin McCarthy speakership. Conservatives might see value in investigations into Democrat corruption, incompetence and malfeasance, but kicking Adam Schiff off the House Intelligence Select Committee only brings so much satisfaction, doesn’t it?
I commend Rick Scott for his ongoing efforts to expose the Washington establishment and for his leadership in bringing new ideas to the table for conservatives to work towards in the future. But what he might do in addition to the policy proposals is present a plan on how to actually defeat the ruling elites and install new party heads. That would truly be groundbreaking and ensure that his concepts received a full hearing in the media, which is always anxious to run stories regarding internal strife among Republicans.
So much has been said and written about the 2024 presidential race, and thus far it only has one declared candidate (Donald Trump, of course). Why not stimulate conversation by actively campaigning for a new GOP senate leader? Scott has made some noise, but much more is needed.
With so few forthright leaders in Washington today it’s not surprising that Americans didn’t take Senator Rick Scott’s reform-minded agenda seriously. The real problem isn’t having enough principles, it’s getting the higher-ups to do something brave and put themselves on the path to change. Will it ever happen? Is it already too late?
Joe Biden economy
Biden cognitive decline
January 6 Committee
Build Back Better
Marjorie Taylor Green
2024 presidential election