Northeast Ohio has been home to many unique characters in the United States Congress. Figures such as former Representatives Dennis Kucinich and James Traficant, with their colorful personalities, are hard to forget even for casual political observers.
Another not as well-known loudmouth from Cleveland is Steven LaTourette. Recently retired from Congress, LaTourette always prided himself standing athwart his conservative Republican colleagues and the Tea Party. His voting record proves he was not just your typical “Republican In Name Only” who supported trillions of dollars in tax increases while calling Grover Norquist’s tax pledge “crap.”
Or just a Member of Congress who opposed a vote on earmark bans because, if passed, “you can’t give people anything” to make them vote your way. LaTourette was a union funded, union supporting, liberal PAC endorsed sellout who embodies the worst of the D.C. political establishment and failed status quo.
LaTourette now runs an organization whose goal is to counter Citizens United Political Victory Fund’s (“CUPVF”) efforts to elect principled conservatives who want to change Washington. Known as the Republican Main Street Partnership, LaTourette supports moderate candidates while keeping an interestingly close relationship to Speaker John Boehner, who is also from Ohio. At every turn, if a Boehner ally in the House is challenged by a conservative candidate in a primary, the Republican Main Street Partnership is there to support the moderate establishment candidate, with Boehner’s donors eager to fund those efforts.
Last week, LaTourette reinforced his allegiances in the Washington Post, with an op-ed entitled, “Don’t blame Boehner for House dysfunction.” In it, he refers to Speaker Boehner as “a skilled politician” who masterfully waives the “Hastert rule” to allow votes on bills important to liberal newspaper editorial boards, such as sweeping concessions to President Obama during the fiscal cliff debates. In addition, LaTourette refers to conservative champions such as Justin Amash of Michigan, Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, and Tim Huelskamp of Kansas, as the “No On Everything Caucus” while describing their adherence to small government principles as “sitting on the sidelines” and “everything that is wrong with politics today.”
LaTourette could not be more wrong, which is evident to anyone who watched Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas filibuster Obamacare on C-Span for more than 21 hours. CUPVF-endorsed conservatives are in Congress to cut taxes and oppose socialized healthcare. They believe that government has too much involvement in our lives, and that policy is only worth supporting if it expands liberty while liberating job-creating entrepreneurs from the shackles of onerous regulations. The “No On Everything Caucus” always says “Yes” to you keeping more of your hard-earned money, to protecting life, to the right to bear arms, and to defending religious liberty.
It is not political posturing to support the principles of our Founding Fathers, and it is outrageous that the leader of a pro-Boehner PAC uses the pages of a major liberal newspaper to claim otherwise. LaTourette’s expressed purpose is to expand the members of the so-called Tuesday Group, which exists to counter the policy agenda conservatives in the Republican Study Committee, and he is doing so with the visible support of Boehner. It is time for conservatives to ask serious questions about Speaker Boehner’s associations with well-funded efforts to undermine the conservative movement.