Tags: Chocola | LaTourette | Tea Party | Club for Growth

Club for Growth vs Establishment Pols Debate

By    |   Tuesday, 11 Mar 2014 06:41 AM

The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) hosted a civil debate between two factional leaders over the state of the competition between the insurgent Club for Growth and the Party Establishment for influence over the direction of the Republican Party. The program, titled "Tea party vs. establishment: Who is helping the right, and who is hurting it?" featured Chris Chocola, president of the Club for Growth, and Steve LaTourette, CEO of the Republican Main Street Partnership, as the contestants, in the debate moderated by Tim Carney of AEI.

LaTourette came armed with a list of complaints: 1) that the Tea Party had condemned the Ryan-Murray budget proposal without even having read it; 2) that Ann Coulter had appeared on Hannity's program on Feb. 19 to charge that the Tea Party was being manipulated by "shysters and conmen"; 3) he defended his remark to National Journal that his faction was going to go into eight or 10 districts and "beat the snot out of" the Tea Party, contending that what he really said was that he was tired of moderate, center-right candidates being wiped out by opponents backed by the Tea Party; 4) that self-anointed Tea Party backers have made a sport out of "RINO-hunting," and they don't have the authority to make these judgments; and 5) he argued that his own and Chocola's voting records are similar, yet Chocola is criticizing Republican incumbents for positions that he and Chocola both supported, such as raising the debt ceiling, funding the Bridge to Nowhere, disaster relief for Hurricanes Rita and Katrina but not for Superstorm Sandy, Chinese currency, minimum wage. He concluded that his favorite example is the Export-Import Bank, condemned by the Club for Growth despite the fact that both members voted twice to reauthorize it, and he charged that Chocola's family business received assistance from Eximbank at least five times.

This prompted Chocola to object that the assistance was non-germane to the argument.

LaTourette concluded that what really bothers him is that when he and his colleagues were raising millions to prevent Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., from becoming Speaker of the House, the Club for Growth spent three times as much attacking Republicans as they did attacking Democrats. He acknowledged that Chocola was not in charge of the Club for Growth then, but he concluded that Obamacare, the carbon tax, the stimulus bill and the Wall Street bailout all would have been stopped if Pelosi had not been Speaker. He allowed that in 2012 the Club for Growth only spent twice as much against Republicans than against Democrats.

LaTourette concluded, "I know where the problem is, and it's not me."

Chocola hastened to state at the outset that the Club for Growth does not consider itself the Tea Party, although they would be aligned on most economic issues. Chocola contended that the outside conservative groups are the "rational actors," and the so-called establishment groups are actually the extremists, because the unfunded obligations of the government are at unsustainable levels, and most Republicans who won the majority ran against government that is too big, so Republican candidates need to run on traditional Republican principles.

He insisted that the current state of the Republican Party is one of friction, not of civil war, because whenever a few Republicans of the many who ran against big government vote that way, it creates friction.

I would advise that while the debate was entertaining, mostly because of the energy the contestants brought to it, the head of the Club for Growth is probably not the best representative of the Tea Party perspective for a debate such as this, because the Club for Growth's agenda lends itself to the interpretation that perhaps the best way to promote growth is for the government to intervene in order to stimulate the economy and favor some clients over others as winners in the quest for growth.

However, both speakers effectively joined the issue of what Republicans should be trying to accomplish in Congress and what types of candidates they should support.

(Archived video and related materials can be found here.)

© 2017 Newsmax Finance. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Robert-Feinberg
The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) hosted a civil debate between two factional leaders over the state of the competition between the insurgent Club for Growth and the Party Establishment for influence over the direction of the Republican Party.
Chocola,LaTourette,Tea Party,Club for Growth
680
2014-41-11
Tuesday, 11 Mar 2014 06:41 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
MONEYNEWS.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved