Our GOP congressmen need to be centrists

How far the Republicans have gone off a sensible track became clear last week when all six Republican congressmen from Wisconsin voted to make Rep. James Jordan of Ohio the Speaker of the House. Jordan was one the principal ringleaders in the attempt by Trump zealots to illegally overturn the historically clean presidential election of 2020.

No election has been more scrutinized, inspected, audited and court-tested than President Biden’s defeat of Donald Trump three years ago.

The Speaker is second in line to succeed the president, and our six wise men put judgement and common sense aside in promoting Jordan as Speaker. Would Jordan make a good president if called upon? He has been a combative, but ineffective congressman with almost no legislation to his name in 17 years in Congress. The only highlight of his career is his loyalty to Trump, one of the greatest losers in history. He obviously lacks leadership.

Fortunately, Jordan is a loser, too, failing three times to win enough Republican members for his candidacy. His opponents knew he would have no qualms about shutting down the government and therefore big hunks of an already struggling economy. He would leave Ukrainian warriors without enough bullets even though they are fighting for all of us against our biggest enemy. Jordan is not a very smart man.

What was our Wisconsin GOP delegation thinking?

Mainstream Republicans need to marginalize the extremist wing of their party as a new Speaker is sought. They need a centrist to be nominated whom centrist Democrats can vote for in the name of good governance.

Enough already for the far right and far left wings of the two parties running the country. Most Americans are sick of the go-nowhere-hyper-partisanship that does more to tear the country apart than build it up as a beacon for democracy across the world.

This is a call for solution-seeking members of the House to create a bipartisan alliance across the middle of our two major parties and come to necessary compromise on the pressing issues of 2023.

Ukraine should not be a partisan issue. Neither should support of Israel, while pushing for restraint on collateral damage to Palestinian civilians. Nor should keeping the government running so our economy can function. Nor should more effective controls of our southern border.

There are centrist compromises available on all four of those challenges.

Five of six Wisconsin Republicans – Scott Fitzgerald, Glenn Grothman, Bryan Steil, Derrik Van Orden and Mike Gallagher – are capable of finding the middle ground. Tim Tiffany is not. Note that Scott Fitzgerald came out early for Jordan and strongly advocated for him.

They all need to get off the back bench and lead toward common sense and compromise across the middle of both parties.

It’s time to put the divisive bullies on the sidelines.

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