Testing time for Republicans

Reuters

Article Highlights

  • With Crimea, Putin reminds us that hard power, not soft power, is the ultima ratio in international relations

    Tweet This

  • Putin's invasion of Ukraine a turning point in post-war Europe

    Tweet This

  • To meet today's challenges, conservatives cannot simply channel the ghost of Reagan

    Tweet This

As Vladimir Putin reminds us that hard power, military power – not “soft” or “smart” power – is the ultima ratio in international affairs, who speaks for the Republican Party?

Is it Eric Cantor? “The eyes of the world are on the United States and our EU and NATO partners,” the House majority leader says.  “It is vitally important that the United States ... send an unmistakable signal that this aggression will not be tolerated.  We need to prioritize defense in our budget so that we maintain a military that can respond promptly to contingencies around the world and that instills fear in our enemies while reassuring our allies.”

Or is it John Boehner, the speaker of the House? “In terms of the spending for defense in this year, I believe that we’ll abide by the budget agreement that we’ve already made,” Boehner said. 

It is not hyperbolic to see Putin’s invasion of Ukraine as a turning point, a defining moment.  After almost a century of effort, at the loss of hundreds of thousands of American lives and untold treasure, the United States was the principal parent, a generation ago, of a “Europe whole and free.”  That is a historically unprecedented and, given the centuries of bloodshed that came before it, a morally remarkable achievement.

Today’s conservatives cannot simply seek to channel the ghost of Ronald Reagan. They must look within themselves to find the wisdom and the courage to meet the challenges of a new era.  The eyes of the world are particularly on the House leadership – Boehner, Cantor, and perhaps especially Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan.  They claim to bear the standard of their party and to embody its principles.

Will they meet the test?

Also Visit
AEIdeas Blog The American Magazine
About the Author

 

Thomas
Donnelly

What's new on AEI

Defeating ISIS: AEI experts weigh-in before the president’s address on Wednesday
image Degrading, defeating, and destroying the Islamic State
image Wealth Building Home Loan: Building wealth through homeownership and retirement savings
image The $3 iPhone
AEI on Facebook
Events Calendar
  • 15
    MON
  • 16
    TUE
  • 17
    WED
  • 18
    THU
  • 19
    FRI
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 | 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
The Constitution as political theory

Please join us for the third-annual Walter Berns Constitution Day Lecture as James Ceasar, Harry F. Byrd Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia, explores some of the Constitution’s most significant contributions to political theory, focusing on themes that have been largely unexamined in current scholarship.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014 | 8:10 a.m. – Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 1:30 p.m.
Third international conference on housing risk: New risk measures and their applications

We invite you to join us for this year’s international conference on housing risk — cosponsored by the Collateral Risk Network and AEI International Center on Housing Risk — which will focus on new mortgage and collateral risk measures and their applications.

Event Registration is Closed
Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Speaker of the House John Boehner on resetting America’s economic foundation

Please join us as Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) delivers his five-point policy vision to reset America’s economy.

Event Registration is Closed
Friday, September 19, 2014 | 9:15 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Reforming Medicare: What does the public think?

Please join us as a panel of distinguished experts explore the implications of the report and the consumer role in shaping the future of Medicare.

Event Registration is Closed
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.