Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Any Role for Conservatives who Believe in Limited Government?

The battle for leadership of the House Republican Study Committee is insider stuff that won't make any difference to the general public, but it is an important bellwether that will show whether conservatives who believe in limited government retain any standing among Republicans in the House of Representatives at all. Fiscal conservatives already lost in all of the party leadership elections for the House.

Jeb Hensarling and Todd Tiahrt are both conservative on social issues, but they differ widely on other important matters. Hensarling, a protege of Phil Gramm, is a vocal advocate for limited government who has frequently criticized his party's leadership as they have taken to advocating spending like drunken Democrats. Tiarht is a connected member of the powerful Appropriations Committee who has mastered the art of greasing the wheels for wasting taxpayer money on pet projects.

It will be interesting to see if Republicans continue to respond to their electoral pummelling with an attitude of business as usual.


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