In case that wasn’t perfectly clear, CQ Roll Call’s April “Capitol Insiders Survey” found that large majorities of Republican staffers on Capitol Hill believe the Freedom Caucus is a “negative force” in the Republican Party.
The results are not surprising, but are illustrative of the hostility to true conservatism in the swamp.
— Roll Call (@rollcall) May 4, 2017
Of the 100 self-identified Republicans who responded to the email poll, 71 percent had a negative view of the Freedom Caucus; 22 percent of the GOP respondents had a positive view, while 7 percent said they don’t know.
Some suggest that the HFC’s growing strength may be the cause for disdain. “They’ve figured out how to use their power to move Speaker [Paul D.] Ryan and Majority Leader [Kevin] McCarthy,” Jeffrey Taylor, an ex-staffer to former GOP Rep. David McIntosh, R-Ind., told Roll Call.
Indeed, moderate Republicans — specifically, members of the “Tuesday Group” — are currently furious with the Freedom Caucus for moving the GOP health care bill to the right.
And it appears Democrats plan to use the GOP’s internal divisions against it. Three-quarters of Democrats polled said they were more inclined to block the Republican agenda than to moderate. With Republicans unable to compromise within their own party, the Left sees no need to upset its base by reaching across the aisle.
So, at the end of the day, what do the moderates and liberals in the GOP gain by fighting the Freedom Caucus? Nothing. Their attempts to move legislation left will not win favor with Democrats, who are dead set on opposing everything from President Trump’s party.
If Republicans want to accomplish anything, they should stop dithering and pass conservative legislation. Otherwise, Democrats will run out the clock on the Trump administration’s four-year term.