With all the Breaking News headlines about the increasing number of establishment Republican fingers poised to press a Donald Trump reset button, you might not have noted another important news item:  Kansas Freedom Caucus member of congress, Tim Huelskamp,  lost his primary to more moderate Republican contender, Roger Marshall.  True, Heulskamp, elected in the Red Tide of 2010, was so obstructionist, so distasteful even to his fellow House Republicans, he was stripped of his seat on the Agricultural Committee by the House Leadership, not an insignificant position in the agricultural heartland state of Kansas.  Good, we say.  Yes, one of the most radical of Freedom Caucus Republicans won't be around come next January when the 115th. Congress is sworn in.   

But what you may not have seen is that while Heulskamp might be the most well-known of conservative Kansan Republicans, he’s not the only Tea Party aligned demagogue who Kansas voters have rejected.  At least six other self-described conservatives lost to more moderate Republican primary participants in the state primary and another five might be added from races that are currently too close to call.   Sure, Kansas is not about to magically turn Blue like liberal Massachusetts or New York State, but in the continuing Breaking News story that is the apparent crumbling away of what used to be known as the Republican Party as a result of Presidential Candidate Donald Trump’s “Shaking Things Up,”  “Telling It Like It is” and “Non-PC” campaign of unleashed fury against everyone except himself, the rejection of the ultra conservatives in Kansas actually reveals something else among harried Kansans:  The Wholesale Rejection of Kansas Governor Sam Brownback and his ultra conservative policies.  The Great Kansas Conservative Economic Experiment Is Dead In The Water. 

Recall, if you will, the hue and cry of the Tea Party folks who blamed the loss of McCain and Romney to Obama to their "not being conservative enough."  (As for McCain, there was super bimbo VP Sara Palin who might have been a factor in his loss as well.) Then too there is the constant continuing criticism of Paul Ryan, John McCain and other establishment Republicans (RHINO's in their parlance) for also betraying conservative dogma and principles by not being "conservative enough."  To the Tea Party, only Ted Cruz (R-TX) has been "conservative enough" as demonstrated by shutting down the Federal Government back in 2013.  The rest of the Republican crowd are simply weak ass pussies who don't understand that they, the Tea Party, are right and represent the true Patriotic America unlike that Black Dictator President who currently occupies the White House.   

But back to Sam Brownback and Kansas.  You remember him, right?  The radical right wing governor who both ran on and implemented – with the joyful cooperation of a Republican-led legislature - the promise of an “Ultra Conservative Economic Administration” that he touted as the only state in the nation that was going to show America that his triple down conservative economic program – the Brownback Experiment – was going to usher in a Kansas Economic Miracle of exploding job creation, a tsunami of tax revenues and pretty much paradise right here in the nation’s Midwest.  Well, as the rest of us could have predicted, Brownback’s six year old miracle has turned into a nightmare of epic proportions for ordinary Kansans.  This “miracle” is what the people of Kansas have soundly rejected. 
This resounding rejection might bode well for the rest of the country where it seems as if 30 years of conservative policies by Republicans and conservative-lite ones by Democrats are at least being questioned if you observe that both Trump’s and Sanders’ remarkable campaigns have economic disenchantment as a prime motivation for their respective successes.  But in apparent blindness to or in willful ignorance of the economic roots of the two surges, the Republicans are proposing “more of the same” if the Republican Party Platform is any indication as is Speaker Paul Ryan’s economic budget Plan, “A Better Way.”  Both documents propose greater tax cuts and so does Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump who proposes “the most massive tax cuts ever.” 

Of course out here in the real world of which Kansas is once again apparently a member,  the people of Kansas, the folks who have been the targets of Brownback’s great conservative experiment for the past six years, have just rejected what Trump, Ryan and establishment Republicans are proposing.   And rather convincingly so.  But it’s not only Kansas where there seems to be trouble in Republican River City.  Right Wing and Tea Party aligned primary incumbents have lost or are losing to more moderate primary contestants in  Georgia and New Hampshire.  Do these results portend the defeat of the 2010 Tea Party rout in Congress that gave rise to the Freedom Caucus?  It’s way to early to predict but these small glitches in the continued doubling and tripling down on “more conservative” candidates and policies is a good sign.

Another good sign is Trump’s rather precipitous decline in national polls.  Nearly every poll since the conclusion of the Republican and Democratic conventions shows him dropping.    In an ABC/ Washington Post poll, 70% of respondents view Trump unfavorably and his favorability rating has declined from 37% to 29%.  Bloomberg and Gallup polls support the declines in Trump’s favorability as indicated in the ABC/Post poll.  It would seem that the last week of Trump’s Khan pushback, his female job discrimination comments and his refusal to endorse Paul Ryan and John McCain in their primary contests have taken their toll.  While these are encouraging numbers, we still have three months to go before the election and God alone knows what might happen between now and then.

But I have to say that I am very heartened with the results of the Republican primary in Kansas.   It would appear that the people of Kansas have sharply switched course away from Brownback and his conservative Nirvana that he’s been pushing since his election in 2010.  This is a very good sign.

On the other hand, since this election cycle has been nothing if not bizarre, I will hold my predictions until November 8th 2016 when we will finally know where it is that America is headed.



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