A question for which there is no clear answer: Who’s the leader of the Republican Party?
If you ask Republicans who is the leader of their party these days, you’re going to get a wide a mix of answers, none of which comes even close to a consensus choice.
Or you’re going to get a shrug of puzzlement.
The reasons for this are many, including the indisputable fact that the GOP currently is rent by its own civil war. At almost every turn of late, you’ll hear or read of Republicans saying some pretty nasty things about one another. The far-rightists think the party establishment is dominated by RINOs (Republicans In Name Only). And the so-called RINOs think the Tea Party gang is a bunch of wackos.
Brent Budowsky has MORE TO SAY about all of this:
Republicans lack any credible or coherent national leader. They are dominated by extreme factions pursuing banana republic tactics. They threaten a government shutdown and U.S. default that could trigger a new financial crash.
There is a cancer on the Republican Party. It metastasizes in ways that hurt the nation and violate core values of the party of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan.
I call those who cause this cancer the Banana Republicans. GOP leaders who know better — but who tolerate this cancer — are derelict in their duty to their party and our country.
The Banana Republicans who dominate the GOP do not respect the integrity and credibility of democratic institutions such as Congress. They disrespect the legitimacy of political opponents and disparage large numbers of Americans who oppose their views and fear their tactics. They contemptuously disrespect the legitimacy of Democratic presidents, even those elected by large majorities of voters.
Banana Republicans attack good-faith compromise, honorable negotiation and functional government — THEY are the Washington dysfunction that Americans deplore.
Reagan, the conservative icon who deeply believed in governance and negotiation, would be outraged by Banana Republicans today.
Repeated threats by Banana Republicans to shut down the U.S. government if their extremism does not prevail are reminiscent of tactics by banana republic politicians from other continents in previous centuries, who like Banana Republicans today held in contempt the democratic values of free nations made up of diverse citizens.
Banana Republicanism began in the 1990s with rightist Republican invectives against Bill and Hillary Clinton, culminating in their hyperpartisan efforts to impeach President Clinton, which constituted an attempted banana republic-like coup d’état.
Banana Republicans would destroy the U.S. Senate as an institution of government through filibuster abuse.
Banana Republicans do not merely call for changing ObamaCare; they aggressively try to obstruct and destroy the faithful execution of a law of the land that was duly passed by Congress and signed by the president — a radical extreme opposed by most Americans.
Banana Republicans oppose jobs programs with fervent partisan fanaticism, launch ugly attacks against providing food for hungry children over the objection of spiritual and religious leaders, assault collective bargaining that Republicans have traditionally supported, attack pensions for fire fighters and teachers and police while championing lucrative pensions for themselves, believe corporations are people but citizens should not have a protected right to vote, and argue that wealthy factions should have the power to buy elections.
And now, Banana Republicans are threatening to sink the economy and crash the markets with repeated threats to force a government shutdown and trigger a U.S. default — extremism that alarms even stalwart GOP business leaders, GOP investors and GOP donors.