It seems there’s a rift in the Republican Party between hard-line TeaPartiers and establishment Republicans. A Teapartier ended Eric Cantor’s dreams of becoming the first Jewish Speaker of the House. But these dreams were thwarted not by the little known populist Dave Brat, but by those behind the scenes, pulling the strings in the GOP: The Heritage Foundation. Cantor was losing favor with Heritage’s think tank, the Cato Institute, whose pockets are very, very deep.
Eric Cantor’s willingness to even consider a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants was merely a diversion. Right wing talk radio hosts like Laura Ingraham and Mark Levin helped Heritage destroy Eric Cantor by using populist techniques of personally exposing the lavish lifestyle of the once and future Speaker.
Brat told Internet radio host Flint Engelman that the “number one plank” in his campaign is “free markets.” Brat went on to exx plain, “Eric Cantor and the Republican leadership do not know what a free market is at all, and the clearest evidence of that is the financial crisis … When I say free markets, I mean no favoritism to K Street lobbyists.” Banks like Goldman Sachs were not fined for their role in the financial crisis — rather, they were rewarded with bailouts, Brat has Zsaid.
The American Conservative Union (ACU) awarded Eric Cantor a 95% rating, and the ACU was the gold standard for measuring Conservatism. At the same time, Heritage Action For America had Cantor at 53%, because he was not Conservative enough. Media has focused largely on the ACU in the past for predicting election outcomes. But former Senator Jim DeMint did not retire from the U.S. Senate midterm to take a less powerful position at the Heritage Foundation, the group responsible for the government shutdown of 2013.
Dave Brat is a new populist brand of Libertarian. In addition to his Ayn Rand-style economics views, he says his religious background informs his views on economics.
“I’ve always found it amazing how we have the grand swath of the Judeo-Christian tradition, and we lost moral arguments on the major issue of our day,” he says, referring to fiscal-policy issues.
The Cato Institute is largely the reason Dave Brat was able to defeat the establishment Goliath. Brat spent a paltry sum of money when compared to Cantor. But his backing by the Right Wing talk radio circuit, the mouthpiece of Heritage/Cato, was tremendous free publicity. Somehow, Cato manages to appeal to the anti-crony capitalist Republicans rather deceptively. The Cato Institute is a group headed by a board of twelve, one being David Koch. Current Cato President Dave Allison used to head BB&T, the 9th largest financial holding company in the US with over $174 billion in assets. This is anything but a victory for populism. This is Heritage installing one of their Cato-funded professors trying to appeal to the average person, whose policies will “help” the average American in the worst possible way. This is Republican deception at its finest.