I'm unsure if anyone has taken up the reigns as the official watchdog of Rep. Eric Cantor here at Daily Kos. As the "rising star" of the GOP, he is going to be splashed on our screens more than our stomachs can possibly handle for the next 21 months.
But with the news reported on Feb. 3 that the DCCC was preliminarily targeting Newt Redux in 2010 and a few members digging into his suspicious pass, it's time to really ramp up the efforts to get this asshat thrown out of Congress and stun the GOP by striking down another one of its hypocrites. This means I will publish diaries with a snazzy pun in the title and work to expose Cantor with hope that the media eventually does their job and accurately reports on his screw ups.
That fancy new title, "Newt Redux", wasn't born during the stimulus debate. Back on Dec. 11, the Washington Post ran a feature on Rep. Cantor where they all but branded him as the True Conservative who would rescue the beaten-down party. How strange it is to go back and read this article after what has taken place since President Obama's inauguration:
He talks about creating a new kind of Republican conservative, one less concerned with ideology and more focused on practical solutions, more tech-savvy and less reflexively combative with Democrats, intolerant of ethical lapses and tolerant of new ideas. And especially one who communicates better to the middle class.
Remember, this was on Dec. 11, 78 days before the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law. Cantor, as the Washington Post wrote, was going to be practical, not be combative and would bring a sense of open-mindedness. This man wasn't driven by ideology; he's just a conservative on a search for pragmatism.
At some point during this article's publishing and the stimulus bill debate, Cantor said "screw it" and declared war on President Obama, the Democratic Congress, the stimulus bill and the middle class that Republicans are supposed to be communicating with. We know the story: the Republicans were (not) left out in the cold and spent close to three weeks giving their sob story to the media about how they were bullied on the House playground and didn't get a say in the stimulus bill.
All lies, but real journalists don't have time to set the record straight. They were more concerned making sure that Eric Cantor and dorkboy John Boehner were given ample time to frame themselves as Principled Conservatives and practicing Reaganists. This allowed Cantor to establish himself as "Newt Redux" and give hope to an ailing party. It took less than three months for Cantor to betray the feature written about him.
Unsurprising when the Washington Post reported what Cantor believed are the "prescriptions" to heal his party:
On his nightstand, Cantor heaps prescriptions for his ailing party: "Comeback: Conservatism That Can Win Again," by David Frum, formerly a speechwriter for President Bush; "The Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream," by Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam. He pores over newspaper columns, he says, seeking wisdom "from the George Wills of the world, the Bill Kristols of the world, the Charles Krauthammers of the world."
Terrific. The author, Manuel Roig-Franzia, completely contradicted his paragraph about Cantor being a pragmatist just four sentences later by reporting that Cantor reads up on the drivel of Will, Kristol and Krauthammer. Really, this is Cantor's idea of being a pragmatist? Poring over dopey opinion pieces by the Three Stooges of conservative editorials (David Brooks is Shemp)? Reading books by David Frum and a couple of National Review hacks? Getting advice from the Gospels of Failed Ideas doesn't make you a pragmatist searching for practical solutions.
And it would be fitting that the New Newt consults with the Old Newt:
"I talk to Newt Gingrich all the time," Cantor says. "There are a lot of issues to be learned from him. They were all about reform."
So we've got someone who seeks wisdom from George Will, ideas from Ross Douthat and lessons from Newt Gingrich. It's unclear how this is the recipe for pragmatist. It's almost like saying that throwing turds, piss and vinegar into a bowl with rusty nails is the recipe for strawberry shortcake. Cantor is a Republican Ideologue and this isn't disputable.
The lessons Cantor will be learning from Professor Gingrich are how to obstruct and tear down the president at any cost. If there's anyone that can teach him these ways and benefit the Grand Old Party at the expense of Sam the Plumbers, it's Gingrich.
Cantor's ideas are the rejected ideas of a party that was told to suck it when voters went to the polls the past two years. Republicans, led by Cantor, want to deliver the same stinky shit but delivered in fancier paper and wrapped with a shinier bow. There are no new ideas from the Party of No.
The rest of the article details how Cantor took a bruising when he decided to take on Nancy Pelosi back in September and how he's learned from it. One of the lessons he took away from the experience was to ratchet up the partisan behavior and delude himself. Even though Americans have sided with a woman that has been demonized far more than Princess Palin, Cantor really believes he's making progress with the electorate.
Cantor is trying to brand himself as the voice of the GOP. Boehner is simply another hurdle on his way to more power and prominence. He has been mentored by three of the most corrupt, soulless politicians in Washington (Abramoff, DeLay, Gingrich). He takes advice from a Bush flunkie that introduced the "Axis of Evil" into the political lexicon.
If you aren't on board yet with tossing Eric Cantor out of Washington, you should be. I encourage anyone to contribute to the Cantorbury Tales so we can continue exposing this fraud and completely derail his chances for re-election.