When House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), first assumed federal office he was a rising star in the Republican Party. Often cited by his supporters as a fiscal hawk, and often thought of as a friend to the grassroots, it was not a surprise when in just ten short years Mr. Cantor rose to one of the highest positions in federal government, House Majority Leader. But, as with almost everyone who settles into the inside-the-beltway life, it seems that Mr. Cantor has been afflicted with the ideological cancer that transforms a budding Statesman into another creature of establishment politics, removed from the intimacy of his constituents.
It can be argued that Washington, DC, creates strange and unusual “bedfellows,” where finding solutions to problems facing our country is concerned. If honest men and women were moved to espouse the truth, a consensus would form proving that it is, indeed, those on the Right side of the aisle – along with centrist and independent-leaning Democrats – who do best at finding middle ground in affecting solutions. To wit, it is the Statesman who can not only engage the loyal opposition in an exercise in good government; an exercise that formulates solutions that are fair to all, but balance the inside-the-beltway elitism with fierce loyalty to his or her constituents.
To that end, those elected to office who move away from their obligated loyalty to constituency; those who abdicate a loyalty to the principles that delivered them to the affections of their constituents, in deference to a chosen allegiance to political party, special interest and/or station, have no defense for their actions but to admit (or at the very least recognize) their corruption; their subjugation to forces unaffected by the needs of the elected official’s constituency. Sadly, there are many – both knowingly and not – that serve in Washington, DC, who exist in this state of political subjugation. Even sadder is that it appears Mr. Cantor has succumbed to the “demons of the beltway.”
To say that the Republican majority in the US House of Representatives owes its very existence to the many TEA Party groups around the nation would be an understatement. Truth be told, if not for the dedication and perseverance of these patriotic Americans – who have been demonized at every turn by the very inside-the-beltway demons who have corrupted the American system of government to the point of financial and intellectual malfeasance – the Progressive movement, under the leadership of Nancy Pelosi (P-CA), would have maintained control of the House, no doubt having advanced a cadre of special-interest, economy-killing legislation that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), would have undoubtedly delivered to President Obama for codification into law.
This very same TEA Party movement – these very TEA Party groups, are responsible for delivering Eric Cantor to the position of House Majority Leader. Put another way, Mr. Cantor owes the TEA Party for his success in station. This is why Mr. Cantor’s actions of September 4, 2013, are not only disturbing, but an affront to the very people who worked so hard to achieve victory, not only for Mr. Cantor, but, because of his elevated station, the whole of the House Republican majority.
With the issues of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and immigration reform at center stage – two issues among many on which Virginians hold decided opinions, the Richmond, Virginia TEA Party group sought to exercise its constitutional right to redress government. Leaders from this group repeatedly asked to schedule meetings with Majority Leader Cantor. Each time they were denied. And while one can argue that time constraints can be formidable things, the primary and pinnacle obligation for elected officials is to serve their constituents. Reasonable people can understand that there are only 24 hours in a day, but the reasonable in elected office understand that they must arrange their schedules to satisfy the obligations of office.
But, it appears that “time constraints” and an “overloaded schedule” had nothing to do with Mr. Cantor’s denial of access to TEA Party constituents from Richmond, Virginia.
On September 4, 2013, The Richmond Virginia TEA Party held a rally directly outside Mr. Cantor’s Richmond office, complete with a symbolic knock on a locked door. This rally wasn’t a gathering of six people with a Gadsden flag, it was a rally featuring the full complement of TEA Party leadership, with guest speakers such as Brent Bozell, founder and president of the Media Research Center; and others. The onus of this gathering was to compel Mr. Cantor to engage, not with opposition or anti-Conservative groups, but, stunningly, with the very people who served as the foot soldiers who elevated him to leadership.
Mr. Cantor never emerged and his TEA Party constituency has been left without their constitutional right to redress their government on the level closet to the American people, the US House of Representatives.
Now, you may ask, if time constraints and/or an overloaded schedule weren’t the reasons for Mr. Cantor’s refusal to meet with political and ideological allies, what was the reason? The answer to this question appears to call into question the very political and ideological alliances that moved the TEA Party to support Mr. Cantor in the first place.
As the September 4, 2013, Richmond, Virginia TEA Party was holding its rally outside the locked doors of Mr. Cantor’s Richmond offices, Mr. Cantor’s staff, represented at the highest levels, was meeting – privately and very quietly – with far-left groups representing pro-Amnesty, pro-Obamacare and pro-entitlement groups. These groups included:
Central American Solidarity Association (CASA): A special interest group in favor of Progressive and Liberal policies promoting the expansion of rights for undocumented (read: illegal) aliens currently residing in the United States.
The Virginia Chapter of the AFL-CIO: A perennial promoter and supporter of all causes Progressive and Liberal; integral for the passage of The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) on the national level.
The Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy: Among other events, the VICPP co-sponsored the “Social Justice University” with Virginia Organizing. This “university” served to “educate” (a better word would be “indoctrinate”) those in attendance on the issues of pro-immigration legislation, a continued ban on uranium mining, predatory lending, the Affordable Care Act and opposition to a fiscally responsible national budget affecting entitlement reforms.
The Virginia Council of Churches: This organization works closely with the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, focusing on issues ranging from pro-economic justice efforts to the successful advancement of the Affordable Care Act, from “equality” in housing efforts (read: the promotion of the “Section 8” housing entitlement, responsible, in part, for the housing crisis) and the advancement of entitlement via a “social justice” campaign.
Virginia Organizing: A “grassroots” organization centered on a pro-living wage, pro-entitlement, pro-union, pro-social and economic justice agenda. On their “About Us” page they state: “We believe in the elimination of the extremes of wealth and poverty, in a progressive tax system based on the ability to pay, and in making the nation’s financial systems, including the Federal Reserve Bank, more responsive to the average citizen’s needs.”
ACLU Virginia: Enough said.
Specifically, among those attending, were:
Joe Szaskos for Virginia Organizing, who also happens to represent the USA Action Network, an open platform that empowers individuals and groups to organize for Progressive causes.
Rev. Jonathon Barton for the Virginia Council of Churches, an organization considered by those who follow such things a George Soros Open Society front group.
Doris Crouse-Mays for the Virginia AFL-CIO, and also a member of both the CWA (Communications Workers of America) and CPUSA (Communist Party of the United States of America).
And Marco Grimaldo for the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, again, an organization considered by those who follow such things a George Soros Open Society front group.
Now, it would be one thing for Mr. Cantor’s staff to meet with these special interest and Progressive advocacy groups over the course of a legislative calendar year. An effective elected representative understands that those elected to office are sent to Washington to represent the whole of their constituencies, not just those with whom they agree. To create an ideological or political “partition,” where access is concerned, would be an abdication of the elected official’s obligation to the office; to their constituents. It is an action that their supporters should abhor and, in fact, penalize them for. Alarmingly, this is not an instance of individual meetings.
In this instance, all of these organizations, and all of the radical activists representing these organizations, were present all at once – all at once. This private – and functionally secret – Progressive multi-organizational meeting with high-level staff from the Republican House Majority Leader’s office served as, in fact, a “summit.” But a summit for what purpose?
Inquiries into the purpose of this meeting were ignored, just as the Richmond Virginia TEA Party’s requests for their constitutional right to redress government were ignored.
Not a day goes by that we don’t hear someone on television or radio, or in print, advance the false narrative about our country – the United States of America – existing as a Democracy. I say a “false narrative” because to portray our nation as a Democracy is a lie, bald-faced and unquestionable. Our nation exists as a Constitutional Republic, employing a system or representative government that uses a democratic process for elections and advancing legislation. The key – and most important words here – are “Constitution” (which establishes limitations on government) and “representative” (which establishes the will of the people.)
When those we elect to office fail in their obligation to represent the people; when those elected to office begin to act in the best interests of special interests, they have abdicated their obligation to the people they serve. And when those in elected office; those who control legislation and laws, policy and government, cease serving their constituents, then our nation ceases to be a Constitution Republic, and our government ceases existing as a representative government. When an elected official disavows his or her loyalty and fidelity to those they serve, in order to champion those whom they do not directly represent, then our nation exists as an elitist oligarchy masquerading as a free nation.
Until Mr. Cantor either provides unfettered access to his office for his constituents above and in priority to the special interests he appears to be acquiescing to, one can only understand Mr. Cantor to have fallen prey to the “demons of the beltway”; consumed by the allure of elitist oligarchic power; existing unable to serve the very people that elevated him to power, a power bestowed through the ballot box and based on trust.
My Father always used to counsel me, both in matters of politics and relationships, to “Dance with the one that brought you.” It would appear that Mr. Cantor has abandoned his date on the dance floor – in this instance, the TEA Party; Mr. Cantor “tempted by the fruit of another.” And while he may enjoy himself at the dance, once it is time to go home, he is forewarned that he is likely to go home alone.
Frank Salvato is the Executive Director for BasicsProject.org a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education initiative focusing on Constitutional Literacy and the threats of Islamofascism and Progressivism. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His organization, BasicsProject.org, partnered in producing the original national symposium series addressing the root causes of Islamist terrorism. He has been a featured guest on al Jazeera’s Listening Post, Radio Belgrade One, ITN Production’s Truthloader Program in the UK and on Russia Today. Mr. Salvato sits on the board of directors for Founders Alliance USA, a solutions-oriented non-profit organization. He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O’Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel, and was featured in the documentary, “Ezekiel and the MidEast ‘Piece’ Process: Israel’s Neighbor States.” He is the author of the book Understanding the Threat of Radical Islam. Mr. Salvato is a regular guest on talk radio including on The Captain’s America Radio Show, nationally syndicated by the Phoenix Broadcasting and ABC Starguide Satellite Networks, catering to the US Armed Forces around the world. He is also heard weekly on The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth syndicated nationally on the IRN-USA Radio Network. Mr. Salvato’s opinion and analysis have been published by The American Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times, Accuracy in Media, Human Events, and are syndicated nationally. He is a featured political writer for EducationNews.org, BigGovernment.com, Examiner.com and TavernKeepers.com. He is occasionally quoted in The Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking engagements. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.