Late August is the season of Town Halls, and door-belling, and meet-and-greets and fundraisers for candidates
It is also a splendid time to chat with whichever House GOP nominee you encounter, or with whom you have (or have had) some kind of informal relation.
Conservatives have emailed us — “what are the most crucial questions we should ask now in the limited time we may have with a candidate?”
Here are our “back-of-the envelope” questions, but you may have your own ideas — which we are always glad to receive at our email!
I — The Constitution — Using The House’s Appropriations Powers To Preserve Congress’ Legislative Powers:
Speaker Boehner has said here he will urge a “continuing resolution” running until early December, into the after-election lame-duck session.
Q: During this lame-duck session, will you speak and vote for regular order here on appropriations – i.e., insisting on passing individual appropriations bills to fund the government — for the rest of FY 2015, which will start on October 1.
As you know, without regular order — if all budgetary items should be rolled into one giant “omnibus” bill — the House will not be able easily to defund the implementation of the president’s unconstitutional immigration lawmaking — nor his many other intrusive rules nor his job-killing EPA regulations.
Angelo Codevilla points out —
“Since 1989, the Congress has followed mostly ‘regular order’ only twice: in 1995 and 1997. Not since 2000 have the people’s representatives voted and taken responsibility for each of the government’s activities. In this century, the US government has been funded exclusively by single, omnibus ‘Continuing Resolutions’ (CRs).”
Q: And will you then speak for — and vote for — defunding the implementation of the president’s “executive actions” rewriting our immigration laws?
II — Changing The Course Of The GOP:
Senior Republican senator Jeff Sessions has called on his colleagues here to embrace a “humble and honest populism” and say “’no’ to certain business demands and powerful interests who shaped the immigration bill in the Senate.”
“The GOP lost the  election—as exit polls clearly show—because it hemorrhaged support from middle- and low-income Americans of all backgrounds. In changing the terms of the immigration debate we will not only prevent the implementation of a disastrous policy, but begin a larger effort to broaden our appeal to working Americans of all backgrounds. Now is the time to speak directly to the real and legitimate concerns of millions of hurting Americans whose wages have declined and whose job prospects have grown only bleaker.” (Highlighting Forum’s)
Many conservatives, however, see the House GOP too often simply as the voice of the national Chamber of Commerce — Big Immigration, Big Government, Big Education, and Crony Capitalism.
Q: What steps will you take to steer the House Republican Conference toward the interests of working Americans of all ethnicities — as senator Sessions urges?
III – – The leadership of the House GOP:
Many conservatives are gravely disappointed by the leadership of the Speaker:
By his abdicating, since the House GOP came to power in January of 2011, the House’s power of the purse here;
By his toxic immigration schemes here and here;
By his lack of dedication — since January of 2011 — to repealing Obamacare here;
By his attachment to crony-capitalism, as seen in the nearly $1 trillion 949-page farm and food-stamp bill here that the House approved last January here;
By his unconscionable delay here in belatedly naming a select committee here intended to get all the facts out on Benghazi;
By his apparent indifference to appropriations that are facilitating the destruction here of Christians in Syria here and here;
Q: Will you vote for John Boehner as Speaker in the coming Congress?
The House of Representatives has two sovereign remedies to cope with runaway presidents: 1) the power of the purse, and thus of withholding appropriations for specific activities, as Angelo Codevilla explains here; and 2) the impeachment power here, which, as constitutional expert Andrew McCarthy points out here and here might first be exercised on subordinate executive branch officials, even if there is not (yet) sufficient support for impeaching the chief executive.
Q: Would you vote for the impeachment of this attorney general? Or of the IRS chief and senior officials involved in (McCarthy’s words) “either the revenue agency’s blatantly unconstitutional harassment of taxpayers over their political beliefs or the executive branch’s willful obstruction of Congress’s investigation of the scandal?”
Good hunting! — as you track down your (we hope) not too elusive House GOP nominee to pose a fair question or two.
And we would be delighted to hear of your success via our email!
(This post has been slightly expanded since press time last evening.)