It appears John Boehner doesn’t want fiscal conservatives anywhere near positions of power where they can challenge his compromises with the enemy.
The fissure between the GOP establishment and Tea Party members in Congress blew wide open Monday evening when conservative members of Congress were suddenly removed from House financial committees.
RedState’s Erick Erickson was the first reliable source to share that conservatives were reportedly being removed from the House’s finance related committees by Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio).
“This morning Congressman Schweikert learned there was a price to be paid for voting based on principle. That price was the removal from the House Financial Services Committee,” Rachel Semmel, Schweikert’s spokesman, told POLITICO. “We are obviously disappointed that Leadership chose to take this course, but Rep. Schweikert remains committed to fighting for the conservative principles that brought him here.”
Conservative Republican Reps. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas and Justin Amash of Michigan hit back at Republican leadership on Tuesday, following their Monday removal from prominent committees, calling the move “petty” and “vindictive,” and accusing Speaker of the House John Boehner and his deputies of silencing independent conservative voices in preparation to steamroll a tax hike through Congress.
Huelskamp — who was removed from the Agriculture and Budget Committees — released a video on Friday declaring his intention to not vote for any tax increases and received notice of his removal on Monday, “one business day” later.
“I think there’s going to be an attempt to pass a tax increase through the House, in exchange for what?” he told a group of reporters at the Heritage Foundation Tuesday afternoon. “This president doesn’t want to do entitlement reform, doesn’t want to cut spending… I think it makes very clear to conservatives that you’re about to get run over.”
[...] The decision to boot them from the committee, Huelskamp told reporters, “confirms most Americans’ deepest suspicions about Washington: It’s petty, it’s vindictive, and if you have any conservative principles, you will be punished… No good deed goes unpunished.”
“My constituents didn’t send me to vote for him [President Barack Obama] and they didn’t send me to vote for [Senate Majority Leader Harry] Reid or Mr. Boehner,” Huelskamp said.
Amash said that he had not even been informed of the decision yet, and only heard about it from the media.
“We haven’t even been told officially that we were removed from the Budget Committee,” Amash told reporters. “I had to read it in the newspaper… I haven’t received a single call from leadership, a single email… I think it’s pretty outrageous, frankly.”
FreedomWorks president Matt Kibbe bashed the move, too, saying in a statement that “[t]his is a clear attempt on the part of Republican leadership to punish those in Washington who vote the way they promised their constituents they would – on principle – instead of mindlessly rubber-stamping trillion dollar deficits and the bankrupting of America. This is establishment thinking, circling the wagons around yes-men and punishing anyone that dares to take a stand for good public policy.”
Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, the chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee, responded harshly to House Speaker John Boehner’s purge of conservative Republicans from powerful House committees. Jordan suggests Boehner’s moves could damage the Republican Party.
“It’s unfortunate and unhealthy for our party that principled conservatives are being punished for voting their consciences and keeping the promises they made to their constituents,” Jordan told Breitbart News.
Complete classlessness. As Jimmie Bise, Jr. observes:
This sort of move — summary dismissal from important committees for which you leak to the press before you notify the affected members — is a big, fat backhand to the face, a reminder that John Boehner is in charge of the GOP House caucus and not we upstart conservative Tea Partiers… It’s what happens when a besieged leader wants to secure his position to hold off a siege. Make no mistake, conservatives have gotten very close to positions of real influence inside the ranks of the professional Republicans and that just won’t do. And so, a purge of the problem children who believe conservatism is more than a suit you put on to gull the rubes during an election year.
Here’s my advice: Don’t give a single penny to any official Republican organization. Not a cent to the RNC. Not a nickel to the NRSC. Not a dime to the NRCC. Not a quarter to Karl Rove’s idiotic “grassroots” fund, American Crossroads.
Instead, give your money and support to conservative candidates directly and to organizations proven to support conservative principles like Jim DeMint’s Senate Conservatives Fund.