Republican “Young Guns” take aim at Democratic-led Washington
Republican U.S. Representatives Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan and Kevin McCarthy are all in their 40’s.
Yet with many of their colleagues far older — in their 60’s, 70’s and 80’s — see themselves as “Young Guns,” part of a new breed of Republicans ready to challenge their Grand Old Party and take on Democratic-led Washington.
“Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders,” is the title of their book.
Published by Simon & Schuster, it’s to be on book shelves on September 14 in advance in advance of the Nov. 2 election that may see Republicans win control of the House from President Barack Obama’s Democrats.
“We’ve seen both parties ignore the needs of Americans while they concentrate on doing favors for the special interests that get them elected,” Cantor writes in his section of the book.
“Don’t get me wrong. We’re proud Republicans,” Cantor adds. “We just believe that our party has at times lost sight of the things we believe in, ideas like economic freedom, limited government, the sanctity of life, and putting families first.”
Ryan makes a plug for his “Roadmap for America’s Future.” Embraced so far by relatively few House Republicans, it includes gradually raising the retirement age to 70, reducing future Social Security benefits for the rich and putting Medicare and Medicaid recipients in private insurance plans.
With the U.S. facing record deficits, Ryan writes, “The problem, in a nutshell is this. Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security — three giant entitlements — are out of control.”
McCarthy introduces readers to a number of “Young Gun” House Republican candidates who he says are ready to “stand for solutions based on American principles.”
Cantor, Ryan and McCarthy are members House Republican leadership. Ryan is the top Republican on the House Budget Committee while McCarthy is House minority chief deputy whip.
As House minority whip, Cantor is the chamber’s number two Republican, behind House Minority Leader John Boehner.
There are few mentions of Boehner in the nearly 200-page book, which is certain to stir discussion among House Republicans.
Boehner is line to be elected House speaker if Republicans take the chamber. But in the book’s foreword, Fred Barnes, editor of The Weekly Standard, writes Cantor may get the job.
“I’m convinced Eric Cantor will be speaker or majority leader the next time Republicans control the House,” writes Barnes, who first dubbed Cantor, Ryan and McCarthy as the “Young Guns” in a 2007 profile of them.
Joe Scarborough, a former House Republican turned MSNBC talk show host, ripped into the three on air on Wednesday for embracing the “Young Guns” moniker. Laughing, he noted they are all middle aged.
A spokesman for the three brushed off such criticism, saying, “Young Guns is not about age, it’s about a concept and a long-term vision for a new generation of conservatives.”
Photo Credit: REUTERS/Larry Downing (U.S. House Republican Leader John Boehner and Republican Whip Eric Cantor walk through the Capitol)