"When you've got them by their balls, their hearts and minds will follow" -- Chuck Colson, convicted Watergate criminal, Special Counsel to President Nixon.
Jim DeMint (R-SC) seems surprisingly sanguine over a Romney nomination and presidency. Whether it is gay marriage, abortion, gutting medicare/Medicaid/social security, taxes, preventing any infrastructure spending, environmental regulations -- Jim DeMint does not really care if Romney opposed, at one time or another, any of DeMint's positions on any of these issues.
Because Mitt Romney will be their puppet. DeMint expects the Republicans to hold onto the House and take the Senate. "Any bill we send him", DeMint said recently, "he will sign".
Mitt has already bowed at the altar of Tea Party purity on domestic issues. He has been desperate for years to be accepted as a true neoconista. Having avoided all military service himself, and with not a single one of his 5 sons volunteering, he fits the profile quite well. He is very happy to send other peoples' children to war to make himself more than just a "varmint hunter". [Hint to Romney: I'd avoid going hunting with Dick Cheney if I were you. Remember, your goal is to avoid combat at all costs].
But, you say, the Republicans will not get 60 Senate votes no matter what happens, and the Democrats will block the most draconian measures.
With Ben Nelson and Joe Lieberman retiring, they do not have two obvious Democratic votes. To join them.
Here's the secret part of their plan: if they get to 51, the filibuster will be eliminated. Does anyone truly believe that the Kochs and their fellow travelers, but especially the Kochs whose daddy made his money by helping out "Uncle" Joe Stalin, will have invested all this money and allow something as quaint as a filibuster to impede their takeover of the American government and economy?
So, while even Jim DeMint will be happy to let Romney fool the so-called independents during the campaign that he is not as whacko as the others, the results will be a very hard right turn for a country that has already skidded off the right shoulder:
The Ryan Budget will be passed and signed into law. The Environmental Protection Agency will be eliminated along with several other departments to make it less complicated for Vice-President Perry (I'm kidding about the Vice-President part!). The Dodd-Frank (financial reform) Act, the Affordable Healthcare Act, Sarbanes-Oxley act (passed after Enron), the Voting Rights Act (passed in 1965) will all be repealed. Planned Parenthood, unemployment insurance, the GI bill, public television will be defunded.
Judicial appointments that have been held up in the Obama Administration will be handed to Romney who will be told whom to appoint. Authoritarian regimes of the left or the right depend on a captured judiciary to provide the imprimatur of legitimacy -- e.g., Citizens United -- and usually go after that branch first, and the public does not even know what is being done to it.
The internet will become corporate owned, managed and operated, i.e., whatever Rupert wants, Rupert gets.
Romney has zero experience in foreign policy, even less than President Obama did when he took office. Obama took the Chair of the Foreign Relations Committee as his Vice-President. Romney will likely appoint a political hack like Chris Christie (R-NJ) or a whackjob like Rick Santorum as Vice President.
Romney has already surrounded himself with the people who brought us Iraq. Their real goal was not Baghdad, it was always Teheran. Romney has just as much need to prove his macho to himself as did George W Bush -- what better way to do it than to send other peoples' children to war?
But, you object, if this is what the people voted for, then these are the policies that should be pursued. That, in fact, is the rub. The American people want their air clean and water pure; they believe that the wealthy should pay more in taxes. They want medicare/social security/medicaid to be preserved. They believe all children should have a good education, not just those from wealthy communities. They want to eat safe food, take drugs that work, use cosmetics that do not disfigure. They want their roads, bridges, water systems, sewers, repaired. The American people want the internet to keep functioning as it has. The American people do not want to go to war with Iran, and want the engagement in Afghanistan ended, and applaud the end of the Iraq War.
The goal of the DeMints, with the backing of the Kochs and their fellow travelers, is not to let the American people have what they want. And, they will take whatever steps necessary to buy elections, to suppress the vote, to select robotic judges... anything, to make sure that the government is not really of, by and for the people. And, then they attack the government for not doing what the people want, breeding cynicism and resignation. And, they lie, repeatedly using their money to make their views seem to be the conventional wisdom (e.g. social security is going bankrupt -- it's not).
So, while the evangelicals get exercised about Romney, and Tea Party purists cannot stomach either Romney or Gingrich, those who manipulate those people to enhance their own power, such as DeMint, really do not care.
In Romney, they have a puppet. Romney knows it. They know it. In fact, Romney may be the very best cover they have.
And, their major task between now and November is make sure that the majority of the American people do NOT know it.
Follow Paul Abrams on Twitter: www.twitter.com/pabrams2001