For the better part of the past four years, conservatives have had precious little to celebrate when it comes to the national political scene. In fact, since the waning years of the Bush Presidency, debts have been mounting, the annual deficit has been skyrocketing and the future of freedom and free enterprise has been increasingly uncertain. Even following the historic 2010 midterms that swept Democrats out of power in the US House, conservatives have been frustrated by what seems to be meager progress in slowing the progressive political machine. As a result, many have become discouraged and disillusioned with the entire political process.
I understand this sense of frustration, but we as conservatives must recognize the harsh reality that we control only one chamber of Congress, while the left retains the Senate and the White House, not to mention much of the federal judiciary.
Nevertheless, in spite of controlling one chamber of one third of the federal government, the Republican majority in the US House of Representatives has accomplished quite a bit. For starters, federal discretionary spending (where most of the pork barrel spending is concealed) has been reduced by 10% in real terms since 2011. The combination of mandatory spending caps the Republican House exacted out of President Obama during the last debt ceiling debate, combined with the sequester cuts, has led to a decrease in federal spending as a percentage of the national economy from over 25% in 2011 to 21% by the end of this fiscal year. Additionally, if the GOP caucus doesn’t cave in the next round of budget battles, the long term budget caps will shave $2 trillion out of the federal debt.
While none of these statistics can salve the sense of wariness that accompanies an over $17 trillion national debt, they are a glimmer of hope that all is not lost. To those who claim that the GOP majority has done nothing and that electing a Republican House of Representatives in 2010 didn’t make a difference, these statistics tell us otherwise. While all conscientious conservatives, me included, want to see meaningful entitlement reform, a balanced budget amendment added to the Constitution, and a multi-trillion dollar reduction to the national debt, none of it can be accomplished until we once again control the Senate and the White House.
Until then, we should stand alongside our House majority and encourage more of these incremental steps toward reversing the self-induced cultural and economic crises brought about by secular-progressive government. While we’re far from a good place culturally and economically, without the GOP House, we’d be in a whole other world of hurt. Instead of directing our political fire at those fighting in our own trenches, let’s recognize that the battle needs to be directed at Harry Reid and the Democrats who still control the Senate going into 2014.