Now that Speaker Boehner is resigning, the Republican Party will have the difficult task of naming their next leader who will become the next Speaker of the House of Representatives. Traditionally, the next person in line becomes the Speaker. Will Representative Kevin McCarthy be the next Speaker?

Congressman Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina, illustrates the problem that the Republican Party and the nation faces when he said that McCarthy of Bakersfield, California is not a Conservative. Mulvaney’s definition of what a conservative is is not the same as many others have.

For many and perhaps all of the 40 or so members of the Tea Party caucus, they are at war with their own government. Closing down the government has become their way of doing business. If you do not do it their way, they want to shut down the government to force concessions from  those who do not belong to their strange, unpatriotic clique. Government is the enemy, and fear, intimidation and extortion are their means to an end. Forget, compromise or consensus. They do not respect the Institutions of government. They are not Conservatives but rather reactionaries. Ideology is their order of doing business. Their idea of governing has nothing to do with respect for the law or by abiding by their oath of office to obey the Constitution.

As the Pope said, in his address to Congress we have to fight extremism.

The Tea Party may insist on having one of their own as Speaker. For the sake of the nation, I hope we do not see that happen. They are extremists who insist on dictating to the majority of Americans what they want and will except nothing short of victory.

My fellow citizens, that is not governing but rather what they ask for is a dictatorship where only their ideas are acceptable. Perhaps what they really want is what they were denied when the Constitution was ratified and when the Confederacy was defeated during the Civil War. They seem to want the states to have virtually all the power. I have heard it said that the federal government should only be what was enumerated.

The original George Washington administration had the State Department, the War Department, the Treasury and the Attorney General’s office. We have evolved since then, society has grown and the responsibilities of government have grown along with our increased population. We are no longer the Agrarian Society that we were in 1776.

The only growth in government that the Tea Party wants to see is a growth in our military. What is ironic is that the Founders were dead set against a Standing Army. It matters not how many men and women are in our Armed Forces, not how many ships and airplanes we have if we do not stand for liberty versus the wish for security. NO one can be secure unless we have liberty and equality and reject greed, selfishness and the willingness to be led.

If our Republic is to stand and survive the test of polarization and extremism that we face today, we must once again realize that bi-partisanship is the key and that the welfare of the nation is best served by compromise and pragmatic action. Our Republic will die and be part of the dustbin of history if we do not reject partisanship and extremism.

The political fight for the Speaker of the House may very well determine whether our government will survive as we have known it. If the extremists win and the Speaker becomes one who rejects compromise and welcomes a system of governance where only extortion and fear are used rather than the consensus and wishes of the majority of Americans, we will all lose. The House of Representatives is the People’s House. Let us return it to the people and not hand it over to the extremists among us. If the extremists win, we may very well be witnessing the slow death of our Republic.


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