"We learned a lot about loyalty [today]."
The Freedom Caucus refused to vote with the rest of the Republicans on the 7-year long awaited repeal and replace of Obamacare.
Instead, they felt it didn't go farther enough to rescind everything from Obamacare they hated, and they chose to leave Obamacare as the solution for the foreseeable future, rather than get a replacement bill they felt was also subpar.
Whether this was smart or dumb, time will tell.
- Smart - If down the road, they get a better replacement to Obamacare then what was being offered now.
- Dumb - If rather than a better replacement, we end up either stuck with Obamacare indefinitely or get an even worse alternative later.
It's a little like gambling Vegas--they decided to roll the dice again, rather than leave the table with their winnings.
Sure, they could end up a bigger winner or they can lose it all, so we'll see.
But there is another important question here:
What obligation did they have to be loyal and vote with their party vs. being loyal to their own conscience?
The Democrats have held the line better in terms of voting as block--and hence they have proved superior in many cases in wielding their share of power.
In contrast, the Republicans have been more divided and hence, they can't get the votes they need to pass the legislation desired by the right--because somebodies are always holding out for a better deal.
But Trump represents "The Art of the Deal,"--and a deal usually means negotiation, compromise, and that nobody gets everything they want.
So while everyone should vote and act their conscience, there is also something to be said for loyalty to the team effort.
If everyone just holds out for what they want, then really that stoneheadedness will result in virtually nothing getting done.
We've all got to give a little to get a little, as long as it doesn't violate our moral compass, core values, and faith.
Loyalty also has to do with showing and acting with respect.
And being disloyal to the team and leadership has ramifications.
Those who seemed as if they were being true to themselves and their constituents--may end up having really let themselves and the others down, and not just Trump and Ryan.
Finally, loyalty is a two-way street, and I have a feeling Caesar is not yet done with the great treachery that was perhaps so callously inflicted on him and the greater national cause. ;-)
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)