Ding dong, the RINO Speaker is gone!

In November of 2010, just before the midterm elections that would result in a massive tea party turnover of Congress, I was asked on national television what I would think of then-Minority Leader John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerMeet the lawyer Democrats call when it's recount time McCarthy defeats Jordan for minority leader in 159-to-43 vote House Republicans need history lesson in battle over next leader MORE (R-Ohio) as Speaker of the House.  I said that BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerMeet the lawyer Democrats call when it's recount time McCarthy defeats Jordan for minority leader in 159-to-43 vote House Republicans need history lesson in battle over next leader MORE had a long history of selling out the American people, and that I expected that the future would be no different than the past.  I continued, saying, "America deserves better."  History has proven that statement to be true.

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I remember my first meeting with Boehner.  He was still Minority Leader.  When asked what we wanted, we responded, “nothing.”  We simply told him we’d be watching, and working to hold him to conservative principles, along with millions of other tea party members.  He and his staff were baffled.   We were a special interest group that didn’t want anything for ourselves.   We were not part of the Washington cartel, and didn’t want to be. 

My second meeting with Boehner was shortly after he became Speaker, riding the tea party wave to the majority.  This time, when asked what we wanted, we did have something in mind.  We told him that the country was in rapid decline, and millions of tea partiers wanted to see bold action by the House leadership.  We told him that our tea party crowd-sourced plan was that he propose President Clinton’s last budget as a starting point in negotiations.  We suggested that he be bold and offer to take the country back to a time when the budget was last balanced, and much smaller than it had ballooned under the Bush presidency.  He laughed.   And in that laugh, we heard the gravelly, smoker’s voice of the Washington cartel. 

We knew after those two meetings exactly what we would get from Boehner and his “leadership” team.   We knew that we’d get more of the same old Washington cartel, where government grows, the rights of citizens shrink, the cartel gets richer, and the people of this nation pay their bills.  We predicted those things from Boehner, and we were dead on.  To be fair, it was not a difficult prediction.  Boehner has been selling out American conservatives for a very, very long time; 24 years to be exact.

Today, with the announced retirement of Boehner, we turn the page on five years of wasted conservative opportunity in the United States Congress.  For five years, Speaker Boehner has heard loudly and clearly from the people who gave him a Republican majority that they wanted conservative leadership. For five years, he has practiced surrender, capitulation, and compromise of conservative principles. He has repeatedly refused to use the “power of the purse” which gives the House the authority to defund so much that runs counter to conservative principles.  With a staggering majority in the House, he has behaved like the cowering leader of a minority party.  The ferocity of Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), sad as it may seem, stands in marked contrast to the weakness of Boehner.  His tenure as Speaker will go down as one of the saddest chapters of the conservative movement. 

But this morning, the tea party movement that brought Boehner the Speaker’s gavel, celebrates.  Today, an era of wasted conservative opportunity fades into history. We celebrate, but only for moments. 

Now it’s time to go to back to the battle, to make sure that true conservatives have a voice in the new leadership of the House of Representatives.  We will not relent until principled, conservative leaders control both houses of Congress.  

Hopefully, the Speaker’s retirement serves as a strong hint to Sen. Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellRand Paul blocking Trump counterterrorism nominee On The Money: Trump, Senate leaders to huddle on border wall funding | Fed bank regulator walks tightrope on Dodd-Frank | Koch-backed groups blast incentives for corporations after Amazon deal Congress is going to make marijuana moves MORE (R-Ky.).  It’s long overdue for McConnell to fade into the sunset of his career as well.  You can be sure that the tea party movement will continue to work to make that happen, for as long as it takes.  And the tea party movement will continue its work to make sure that the leadership that replaces both of them understands that they answer to those who elect them, and not to the Washington cartel.

The media, and the political establishment said the tea party wouldn't last.  But the revolution continues to grow in size and influence, Boehner is gone, and we are still here.  We will be here in 2016, and every day of every year that there are politicians in Washington, DC who hold power that rightfully belongs to us, the sovereign citizens. 

Ding, dong…John Boehner is gone.  Long live the tea party movement.

Meckler is co-founder of Tea Party Patriots and current founder/president of Citizens for Self-Governance.