McCarthy Booted — There is a Disturbance in the Force
Normally I shy away from discussing the political kabuki theater of Washington, DC. Especially the political wrestling that defines the U.S. Congress. But the ejection of Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy is a big deal and has direct effects on U.S. foreign policy — Ukraine in particular.
McCarthy won the right to become Speaker because he was a gifted player of the political game in the House of Representatives. What does that mean? He was good at raising money and passing it along to members of Congress who in turn were obligated to support him. Only one little problem — the Republican Freedom Caucus. They sent McCarthy a letter last week outlining their concerns about going along with a “Continuing Resolution” and the Speaker told them to go pound sand. Read the letter for yourself:
McCarthy became Speaker in January after making a number of promises to members of the Freedom Caucus, which included handling appropriation’s bills separately rather than mashing them all together in a continuing resolution. McCarthy broke that promise. That is why the Freedom Caucus threw the switch and forced the vote on the floor. Kevin learned that the other McCarthy (actually Paul McCartney) was right — Money Can’t Buy Me Love.
Prodigious fund raising was not enough to placate those Republicans who expected Kevin to honor his promises.
So what next? The leading candidate to replace McCarthy is Steve Scalise. Scalise always has been a good soldier — I mean that he did not try to jump the line and push his way to the top. He is not a man consumed by ambition and ego. He learned the hard way that life is precious and short after he was shot by a Bernie Sanders supporter in June, 2017. Still, he is a creature of the Washington, D.C. political cess pool. There are only two questions Scalise needs to answer to win over the Freedom Caucus. Will he fight the Deep State? Will he honor his promises?
Besides Scalise there is Byron Donalds. He is the dark horse (and NO, I am not referring to the color of his skin). Byron is a rising star in the Republican ranks, but he is a very junior guy. He has not been in Washington very long, which actually plays to his favor among the Freedom Caucus. Representative Donalds is an articulate, smart man who made his money in the financial/banking industry. He is astute. I know that some of the big time Washington lobbyists don’t like Donalds, but I suspect that is because he is not out begging them for money and getting chained to the lobbyist train.
There is a small group of Republicans that are completely fed up with the incestuous corruption that infests the House and the Senate. It smells when career politicians like Pelosi, Biden, and Mitch McConnell wind up as multi-millionaires after spending years in DC. They want to put an end to the practice of going to Washington to get wealthy.
This upheaval increases the risk that the U.S. Government will shutter its operations in 45 days because the Republicans first have to sort out who will be Speaker and that is likely to involve arduous horse trading. Once you have the Speaker then you have to re-start negotiations with the Senate on how to keep the Government operating.
I believe that Ukraine is on the chopping block. There are enough members of the House who are furious over spending billions in Ukraine while the security of the southern U.S. border is ignored. There are even some Democrats miffed over the paltry sums allocated to assist the decimated residents of Maui while Zelensky and his crew are rolling in dough.
The Biden Administration, in my opinion, will be tempted to do something dangerous and provocative in Ukraine, such as launching a false flag attack. For example, rupturing the Zaporhyzhia Nuclear Power plant and blaming it on Putin in order to create a physical disaster that would be used to accuse Republican holdouts of helping Putin rather than sending much needed cash to Ukraine.
I had the honor of being interviewed by Polit Wera, a lovely, intelligent woman. My friend Andrei did amazing work as a translator. It is one of the hardest task in the world.
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