The GOP at Captitol Hill: Chaos, control is their goal

Lee A. Daniels | 8/18/2014, 6:54 p.m.
Three events occurred in the tight confines of Capitol Hill last week that underscore the Republican Party’s extraordinary institutional decline ...
Lee A. Daniels is a longtime journalist based in New York City. His most recent book is Last Chance: The Political Threat to Black America. He collaborated with Rachel Robinson on her 1998 book, Jackie Robinson: An Intimate Portrait. NNPA

Cruz’s sabotage last week led New York Republican, Peter T. King, to complain to a New York Times reporter, “I do wish that Ted Cruz would stay in the Senate. Nobody elected him Speaker … it’s really a cheap shot to be coming in from the side. To have some guy come in from the outside like the Pied Piper is wrong.”

And yet, Cruz’s behavior perfectly represents the political game going on in the conservative side of American politics these days – a game whose goal is sowing chaos. Cruz and his tea party confederates must disrupt the GOP’s own time-honored political processes and lines of authority – sow internal party chaos – if they’re to seize power from establishment figures like Boehner and McConnell.

That strategy has both intensified and yet, ironically, also undercut the commitment the GOP leadership itself made at the very beginning of Obama’s first term to reflexively oppose his administration proposals – to sow governmental chaos – in order to re-capture the White House.

Those two dynamics adopted by the conservative movement and the Republican Party are the major reasons why the American politics of this era is so polarized: because, for them, political chaos is the goal.

Lee A.Daniels is a longtime New York journalist. His most recent book is Last Chance: The Political Threat to Black America.