The "taint of experience"

Jim Gerraghty's newsletter this morning pointed me toward a RedState piece about the current wave of Republican/Independent enthusiasm for a presidential candidate who's never been involved in politics:
Basically everyone who’s in office right now at one point was a political outsider. No one was born into elected office. At some point, all the people who have frustrated you (the voters) and pissed you off ran for office in their first campaign trying to tell you how they were different. They hadn’t been to Washington. They had success in business that would translate well to political office. They were wealthy and didn’t need help from special interests. And so on and so on. And, one by one, we elected those people and sent them to Washington or the Governor’s Mansion or wherever in the hopes that maybe they would be different.
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT)–at one point, these guys were all oustiders. Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) himself was at one time not too long ago a guy with a compelling story of having risen through poverty as one of 12 kids to become President of the company he had worked for for 13 years. He ran successfully as an outsider and won.
The problem is, almost none of them actually were, after they got to office. Easily 95% of these political neophytes, once they got to office, were lured by the trappings of power and corrupted. And then they became the people you hated and the reason to send new political neophytes to power.
Here is the salient fact that many people are missing in this particular logical chain. It’s easy to say and do all the right things and to be non-corrupted when you are a political neophyte. Literally everyone who has ever run for office their first time has done it. What’s hard (apparently, at least based on the evidence) is to remain true to your principles after you win your election and actually get to power.
So what we ought to be looking for isn’t really someone who’s never been tested by the allure of power. History tells us that almost all people fail that test. What we ought to instead be looking for is people who have already been tested, to determine which ones have passed the test with the most success.
This is why I support Walker.

1 comment:

E Hines said...

My support for Walker is waning. His Obamacare "replacement" proposal is just another government entitlement program, and his attack on the Republicans in the Senate is unwarranted and cynical. His complaint that Republicans said that we needed Republican majorities in both Houses to send an Obamacare repeal to Obama, we got the majorities, and Republicans didn't send the bill are disingenuous.

The condition is necessary, it is not sufficient, and it was never advertised as sufficient. Of course Walker knows this.

He's not alone in that disingenuous beef; lots of purported Republicans and Conservatives have made it, but none of them have deigned offer an explanation for how it becomes a Republican fault that six Democrats won't vote for cloture on a Repeal Obamacare Act.

It's getting old.

Eric Hines