By Steve Eggleston
First things first, congrats to Peter and the rest of the Magnificent Seven for winning one of the Best Grassroots Blogs awards from Doug Ross. It’s been a honor to write here, even as infrequently as I have been.
2015 has been one crazy year, especially on the political front. Going into the year, the conventional wisdom was that the Republican Party had a very deep bench, especially from the ranks of governors, from which to draw a Presidential nominee. That hasn’t exactly happened, as the first three to drop out of the race were accomplished governors who, arguably, would have been able to keep the grand center-right coalition together, with the remaining candidates representing, or at least claiming to represent, mere chunks of said coalition.
So, what happened? One could say Donald Trump happened, but that is only a partial answer. The long-rumored split between the GOP and its base seems inevitable now, and it’s been engineered by both the party bosses and the leading candidate. In fact, it reminds me of an old staple from Mad Magazine called “Spy vs. Spy”, or more properly, “Spy vs. Spy vs. Spy”.
In the 2-person version, the white spy and black spy plot against each other, Sometimes, the plot works; other times, it blows up in the plotter’s face. Things are a bit different when the grey spy shows up – she always wins.
Over the past year, the DC establishment redoubled their efforts to abandon their (former) base of conservatives, and they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. The latest example – for the small price of finally getting the ban on oil exports removed, they gave the Democrats and their K Street masters everything else they wanted, from fully funding ObamaCare, executive amnesty for illegals and Planned Parenthood to resurrecting the Export-Import Bank and picking the first set of winners in the tax-break rewrite game.
Meanwhile, Trump, who entered the race only after consulting the husband of the Democrat front-runner, has been using that abandonment, his gift for the bombastic, and the willingness of those who claim to be tired of being told one thing and getting something else to ignore his pre-2015 positions on various issues to drive out the aforementioned governors and drive himself to the top of the national polls.
I wish my prediction for 2016 were different, or at least as wrong as my predictions for 2015 turned out to be, but the way things are going, the grey spy is going to be standing over the smoking corpses of the white and black spies flashing the double-victory symbol.