PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Matt Drudge recently announced his choice as our best senator. He chose Senator Rand Paul and how he kept his heart despite the cynicism of Washington. I agree and I think Drudge is noting that Paul is the guy who is still following the principles that he ran on.
Paul supports the Freedom Caucus, the most conservative wing of the Republican Party. I mention that because I think they are also consistent with what they told voters would do if elected. Of course, they are under attack by President Trump for the failure of the Paul Ryan healthcare bill. This is not only disappointing but potentially self-defeating. The Freedom Caucus members are not the enemy.
This whole dispute among Republicans raises the issue about when and how should conservatives push back against President Trump when there is a clear dispute over policy. I know this is an uncomfortable issue for my listeners. I think the key is to stick to the policies and not get into petty personality clashes.
I concede that some Freedom Caucus members at times appear to be purists who won’t compromise on even minor issues. However, on the Ryan bill I think they saved President Trump and Republicans from a bill that would raise premiums and cover fewer people.
Last week I hosted Jim DeMint, former senator and current president of the Heritage Foundation, at the radio station last week and I trust him. He is a Freedom Caucus guy and someone who speaks frequently to President Trump and he feels that President Trump can be brought to see that he must work with guys like Rand Paul and Mike Lee to be successful. For me, my job is to remind everyone that the media wants to narrate a story that the Freedom Caucus people are destructive. I’ll remind that acting on principle is never destructive.