House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis. speaks during his weekly news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The Republicans Who Never Dreamed Finally Dream Their Fantasy

It is a staple of Washington Republican orthodoxy. Ted Cruz is to blame for the government shutdown, conservatives have been impractical and demanded the impossible, and nothing will ever happen for the better until conservatives become realists.

Conservatives explain the possible and Republicans counter with the practical. Conservatives say that if the GOP will hold the line on Obamacare, the debt ceiling, you name it that eventually Obama will fold. Republicans tell conservatives they are dreaming, it won’t happen, and it would destroy the party in the process.

Time and time again this happens in the same way. Conservatives dream and the Republican elite in Washington tell them they are in fantasy land.

What an amazing role reversal we are now in.

The reality is that Donald Trump may be held back from 1,237 delegates at the convention. The reality is that Ted Cruz is the only candidate seriously challenging Donald Trump and preventing him from getting to 1,237. The reality is that Trump and Cruz will have the most people loyal to them at the convention and those people will shape the Rules Committee and consider whether to strip the requirement of an 8 state win for nomination consideration.

Those are the realities and the practicalities.

But the Republicans in Washington who have never dreamed and crush the dreams of conservatives so often have begun to dream their ultimate fantasy — Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan as the Republican nominee.

To bring in someone who has not run for President this year would be the most harmful thing the GOP could possibly do outside of nominating Donald Trump. They have a perfectly fine Republican alternative to Trump in Ted Cruz. But the Republican elite do not like Cruz.

So now the very people who have always told the rest of us to go along, get along, and stop making impossible demands and stop dreaming are now having to feel their way through a world hijacked from their control. They dare now to dream because it serves their self-interest. They can preserve power in their dream scenario in ways they cannot with the other scenarios.

Therein lies the rub.

When conservatives dream big and chart a course, they do so not for themselves, but for the country.

When the Republican elite finally start dreaming, it is always to preserve their power.

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Erick Erickson

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