The current contest for GOP leader in the House of Representatives is the first time in the history of the Republican Party that party members, that is, all of us in the blogosphere, can directly influence the decision.
For the next three weeks, until the secret ballot vote on February 2, the back benchers will be eyes and ears open to e-mail and catcalling from us in the pachyderm herd. Establishment candidate Roy Blunt of Missouri — who speaks in favor of grotesque earmarks and does not condemn DeLay for his lunatic 527 abuses — has fallen short of pledged votes to lock it up for the first ballot. Challenger John Boehner of Ohio is a sincere and well-prepared reformer of the rotten practices that led to the present crisis. Boehner opposes earmarks and the egregious forms of lobbyist bribery such as travel tickets and accommodations, such as back-scratching, money-laundering 527s. And now there is John Shadegg of Arizona, who represents the Directory-fiery Republican Study Committee, which fancies itself the Spirit of ‘94, the clean it all up tyros, Cromwell rides again.
I am a fan of brooms.
My choice, after speaking with eloquent Thad McCotter of Michigan, who supports Boehner, and gregarious Jeff Flake of Arizona, who supports Shadegg, is to go to work promoting Shadegg. What the GOP needs is energy and passion, to prepare for the lame-duck hood of the presidency, to transform the party into a disciplined, policy-driven enterprise. Also, Shadegg is the kind of a rainmaker that can handle majority or minority leadership, pending a sell-off in the 06 elections.
Also, also, my eye is fixed on Arizona rising and prepping the party for the reformer crusade coming from the senior senator from Arizona as he launches his campaign in 07.
I support John Shadegg of 3rd Arizona for leader and Eric Cantor of 7th Virginia for whip. Showtime. Make your voices heard now: each and every back bencher with a vote reads his or her e-mail closely: shout down the House of the 527 Mortal Sins.