Anyone who thought Judge Roy Moore was simply trying to impress voters when he said he refuses to be pushed around by the GOP establishment ahead of the Alabama Senate primary special election ought to take a look at how the candidate spent his time on a recent trip to the nation’s Capitol.
I spoke to Moore at an Alabama campaign event back in August, relaying to readers following our conversation:
If elected, the candidate said, he will likely find himself routinely aligned with conservatives like Sens. Rand Paul and Mike Lee— the two are lawmakers regular readers of Washington political news quickly recognize as routine conservative flies in the establishment GOP ointment.
But it’s not because he’s interested in obstruction, Moore told me. He wants to spend his time in the Senate doing everything he can to get the nation back to its conservative constitutional core.
According to the candidate, that means limiting the power of judges to legislate from the bench, restoring Congress’ role in the declaration of war, eliminating as many bureaucratic regulations as possible, pushing for tax reform that brings the nation as close to a Fair Tax as possible, and moving away from standards of political correctness that distract from all of the aforementioned.
Everything Moore told me sounded pretty good as a conservative who’d like to see elected officials put the Constitution ahead of all other concerns. Of course, I’ve also heard similar promises from several other candidates who have run on bringing conservatism back to a wayward GOP establishment. With the exception of a few, many of them immediately joined the establishment upon winning their elections.
But if Moore’s recent trip to Washington DC is any indicator, Alabama voters have the opportunity to add to the small group of Washington lawmakers interested in upholding the Constitution without regard for political consequences when they head to the polls in December.
Here’s an excerpt from a rather refreshing report POLITICO put together this week regarding Moore’s visit:
The GOP’s divisive nominee in the Alabama Senate race visited on Wednesday and Thursday with three of the most defiant Republican senators: Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah. He was expected to meet with House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) later Thursday. And Moore was dining with conservative leaders Jim DeMint, the former senator from South Carolina and ex-president of The Heritage Foundation, and David McIntosh, the president of the Club for Growth, on Thursday evening, according to a source familiar with the gathering.
One person Moore did not see: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, whom Moore wants to dethrone. And he did not visit the Senate Republican lunch, as is customary for Senate GOP primary winners.
The former judge did meet with one establishment figure: the Senate GOP campaign chairman, Cory Gardner of Colorado, whom Moore is cooperating with to keep the seat in Republican hands. But if they are successful in December’s election, Moore is unlikely to offer an olive branch to the GOP leaders or the broader Republican establishment.
Here’s to hoping Moore is the first of many conservative outsiders to topple establishment approved Republican candidates in coming primary cycles. Though President Donald Trump made the mistake of endorsing Luther Strange, Moore’s Senate Leadership Fund backed opponent in the Alabama primary, this is what swamp-draining looks like.
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