Does the Tea Party still cry that they want their country back?
Or have they got used to having a Black President, and the changing demographics of the United States. I say let them cry all they want, America is moving forward and not backward.
- Victor MeldrewLv 77 years agoFavorite Answer
The Tea Party is the former John Birch Society Republicans and nothing has changed in living memory.
From the 1964 Congressman's Report
Taxes and Spending III
Just Who Are The Big Spenders?
I was just going to press with my third report in this series -- a proposal for specific 1964 spending reductions -- when the House debated and voted on the 88th Congress' first big money bill. I'm deferring the report in order to say something which badly needs to be said: "Conservatives", if they could elect a President and majorities in Congress, would not spend less, but would in fact spend more.
I concede that these leaders would reduce spending in many federal activities, but based on their own statements, the net result would be more federal spending.
WHAT 'CONSERVATIVES' ARE WE TALKING ABOUT?
In making this blunt statement I'm not talking about the irresponsible radicals who dominate the John Birch Society, people who would repeal the income tax and dismantle the federal government. I'm talking about patriotic, sincere, generally responsible Americans like Senators Byrd, Thurmond, Goldwater and Tower; Representatives like Les Arends (the No. 2 Republican in the House, mentioned below), Bruce Alger, Bob Wilson and Donald Bruce; men like former Agriculture Secretary Ezra Benson.
To be sure, these are strong-minded individuals who do not agree among themselves on everything. However, they all label themselves "conservative", and I think their speeches and writings reveal a general "consensus" about what is wrong with our government and the policies needed to correct it.
THE PROMISE OF 'FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY'
In recent weeks these men, and others, have made the welkin ring with discussions of "fiscal responsibility." It has been said that the 1964 budget should be vigorously slashed, and some of them have mentioned total cuts of $10 - 15 billion. These speeches hit a responsive note with taxpayers.
But when the time arrived for action -- not words --, when the first big money bill came to a vote March 13, most of the "fiscal conservatives" in the House of Representatives voted, not for cuts, but for more federal spending.
In the first big test a Kennedy spending bill asking for $15.4 billion was increased by "conservative" votes to $15.9 billion. I voted against the "add on" amendments.
The leader in the fight for these "add ons" was Rep. Arends of Illinois, who is also ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee. He has started a running feud with Secretary McNamara on all sorts of weapons and systems he thinks we ought to add to our arsenal at a time when military spending is already up from $46.4 billion in 1959 to $55.1 billion proposed by President Kennedy for this year.
On this occasion Arends and his supporters demanded increases of nearly half a billion dollars in the 1964 Defense Department authorization bill. The big items in the increase are for more killer submarines ($104 million) and more RS-70 airplanes ($364 million) -- items the Defense Department says we don't need and it doesn't want. If we start construction of these additional projects, we have to finish the job -- with additional billions later on.
If this is "fiscal responsibility" or "conservatism", I'm using the wrong dictionary.
I should add that this is not a pure Republican-Democrat conflict; if it were, the increase would have been voted down. The fact is there were many Democrats as well as Republicans on the winning side. But the main driving force for this increase came from the men who regularly rank at the top of the famed "ACA Index," published by Americans for Constitutional Action -- probably the most ultra-conservative of the groups which regularly "rate" congressmen.