Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe Answers the Question of the Day, What Is Infrastructure?

Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe Answers the Question of the Day, What Is Infrastructure?

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – guest host Ben Cunningham welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line to weigh in on the infrastructure spending, budget reconciliation, and the filibuster.

Cunningham: Neil McCabe, who is the Washington correspondent for Star Media and probably the most connected person in Washington, D.C., is on the line with us. Neil, good morning.

McCabe: Hey. Fantastic to be with you. I hope you had a good, long weekend.

Cunningham: We did. We did. Al Gore was in town, so it was cold. (McCabe laughs) So, unfortunately, we had a cold weekend, but I actually got in the water. I stayed in about 30 seconds, and then I got out. All right, Neil, we’re going to ask you the question of the day here. What is infrastructure? (Laughter)

McCabe: What isn’t infrastructure. (Laughter)

Henry: That’s the answer.

Cunningham: What can you tell us about the huge package? I mean, he announced this week the package where he throws everything into this thing but the kitchen sink. How is this thing going to fare? Are Republicans going to stand up at all, or are they just going to pass this thing via reconciliation and it’s going to be over quickly?

McCabe: There are a number of different Republican senators that have made their way to the White House to try to cut deals, and all of them are sort of the usual suspects that you would expect, like Mitt Romney.

But also, you know, John Cornyn, I think the person to really watch is Shelley Moore Capito from West Virginia. She is a full-on Trump hater. This, of course, was after the election, and she sort of played nice with Trump during his presidency. But once the results were sort of put in stone, she has come out as a full-on Trump hater.

She’s also someone who uses Paul Ryan’s fundraiser. And I wrote about this for The Tennessee Star. She is completely linked in to this GOP resistance that’s being run by Paul Ryan. And this crowd is trying to push for an infrastructure bill. And who knows what’s even in it. Republicans are saying 900 billion. And that’s, like, their compromise.

Cunningham: Yeah, thanks a lot.

McCabe: But what’s even in it, right. The only thing we know that’s not in it is a wall on the Mexican border, which was, frankly, even throughout the campaign, that’s like, the biggest applause line Trump ever had.

And so what they’re going to do is the Biden White House needs to get this thing done. And they’ve told the Republicans that they have a week to sort of get their act together. And if they want to participate in this thing, the translation is the Biden and Democrats say we’re going to pass this.

And if you want your pork projects, if you want your swimming pools, your bridges, and all this stuff for your districts and your states. If you want all your goodies and Christmas presents put into this bill, you have to get on board now.

And they think they can pass it. They might be able to do a reconciliation, but they might not. The Senate is not lock solid. It’s a 50-50 Senate. And there are Democrats who are in trouble.

Cunningham: Has Manchin come out one way or the other on the whole budget?

McCabe: Manchin is a stoic vote for the Democrats. But what he won’t do is he will not go along with the filibuster and he may not go along with reconciliation. Now they may do reconciliation with the permission of the Parliamentarian. This reconciliation rule basically makes the budget exempt from a filibuster.

And the idea is you can’t to stop the government from being shut down by a filibuster. And so you’re only supposed to have one budget a year hence, you can use reconciliation one time. And you can only use reconciliation when it deals with taxes or something connected to the budget.

This is why sometimes a tax bill can go through with reconciliation. But we saw in 2017, you can’t do a lot. It has to be kind of revenue-neutral. And so Manchin may or may not go along with this. My feeling is that Manchin will vote with the Democrats on their bills like this one.

He will not try to disrupt the rules of the Senate. You’re looking at in Arizona, you have Sinema and Mark Kelly, who may be no votes. Obviously, Hassan in New Hampshire is looking at Chris Sununu.

And you have this specter of inflation, which was like something people were whispering about. They were whispering about it six months ago, three months ago, two months ago.

Cunningham: Now it’s real.

McCabe: Now people are saying, holy mackerel, we are going to blow up this economy with inflation. And the idea that Biden just announced another six trillion dollar bill. And people are like, whoa, guy, what are you doing?

Carmichael: Neil, let me ask you a quick question. Didn’t the COVID bill the Democrats passed, didn’t they pass that with reconciliation?

McCabe: I’m not sure if they use reconciliation.

Carmichael: Well they had to because no Republicans voted for it.

McCabe: So if they did, that was their one-off. The Parliamentarian rules that you can use reconciliation twice, then basically it’s game over. Then the filibuster is over. But the specter of inflation is becoming very, very real. And for the first time, the Republicans are getting political traction against the spending, not because of the debt, but because of this inflation.

Carmichael: Neil, let me ask a question. I’m going to make a statement, and you can correct me. I was under the impression that reconciliation could be used for taxes and spending.

But if you are going to pass another bill, for example, the ProAct or the Senate version of the HR1 that requires 60 votes, but the taxes and spending did not require 60 votes that you can pass that with a majority. Am I wrong about taxes and spending?

McCabe: No, you’re absolutely right. The reason why you have this reconciliation allows for one privileged motion a year in the Senate that is not subject to filibuster. But that’s because of the need to get the budget done.

You can’t change the voting age. You can’t regulate guns or de-regulate. You can’t do gun legislation. You can’t make Puerto Rico estate using reconciliation. If it’s connected to the budget, you can use reconciliation.

But even then, there’s not a lot you can do because you have to be relatively budget neutral or revenue-neutral, which is why the 2017 tax bill was passed with reconciliation. But it couldn’t go to the far extremes, which is why they had the House bill repealing the estate tax, and Republicans put the state or death tax back in. Specifically, Mike Rounds from South Dakota, personally put the estate tax back in.

But the excuse was that we needed to push revenue back in so we can get this bill passed. Biden’s in trouble. Let me just say. And I’ve said it over and again. Biden is in trouble and he’s losing control of the Senate, but he’s also losing control of the House.

And whatever he doesn’t get done by July 4 will not get done. We’ve already crossed Memorial Day. They know that they have between now and July 4 to get something done.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Washington Correspondent Neil W. McCabe on the Odd Disinterest of Hunter Biden’s Sprial of Debauchery and Corruption

Washington Correspondent Neil W. McCabe on the Odd Disinterest of Hunter Biden’s Sprial of Debauchery and Corruption

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line to weigh in on the Hunter Biden laptop saga and how everyone from the CIA to the mainstream media continues to turn a blind eye.

Leahy: We are joined on our newsmaker line right now by the best Washington correspondent in the country and the Washington Correspondent for the Star News Network and The Tennessee Star, Neil McCabe.

You’ve giving breaking news about Hunter Biden in that presentation in your story that the former producer of Stephen K. Bannon’s War Room made last night to the Manhattan Young Republicans Club. Tell us more about that. You broke that story at The Tennessee Star.

McCabe: I think what’s interesting about the Hunter Biden laptop or hard drive is that number one, almost immediately after The New York Post came out with that first story, the mainstream media and leading national security people like John Brennan and Clapper and Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA, former National security advisors.

All of these people signed a giant letter saying that this is Russian propaganda and that is fake. And if you Google the Hunter Biden laptop today, the Google search will tell you that this is a fake thing and that it was invented by Russian propaganda and that’s it.

And this is less than two weeks before the election. You have this amazing archive of Joe Biden mixing of his private family benefit and his public service. And I defy you to show me another archive that you can look at to see how a politician and his family are mixing sort of this service and business in real-time.

Carmichael: Where’s this archive, Neil?

McCabe: It’s the laptop. Well, I mean, I can get you a copy of the hard drive, if you like one, but it’s around. Vish Burra who is the producer for Steve Bannon’s War Room and Jack Maxey who was his co-host, hey did the dive into it where a lot of people sort of brushed it off and dismissed it.

And frankly, there’s a lot of people who just don’t have the time to dig into this thing. And it’s the Chinese, it’s the Middle East, it’s Mexico, and it’s Ukraine. And then, of course, there is Hunter’s own sort of subplot of Hunter’s personal life, which is a train wreck of drugs, alcohol, engagements, and entanglements with law enforcement, where he’s having an affair with his brother’s widow.

He’s having an affair with his brother’s widow’s sister. There’s sort of crazy sort of hint that there may have been something going on with his own niece. And there it is. You would think someone would be interested in it.

And that’s what Vish Burra presented to the New York Young Republicans last night. And that’s what you’re going to see more and more of. I absolutely am convinced.

Leahy: So Vish Burra had the hard drive that was dropped off in the Delaware computer store. He has a copy of it of that hard drive. And he did a presentation called Hunter Biden: A Full Frontal Expose last night at the New York Young Republicans Club in Manhattan.

It suggests that there was well, I don’t know, said other than semi-quasi pornographic elements to this. Is that true?

McCabe: There are some salacious details, but part of this whole story is you have a bagman for the Biden family operations who is a spiral of debauchery, and these emails and texts there on the hard drive.

He keeps reaching out to his dad, and his dad is kind of aloof. His dad basically just wants to keep him going to operate as the bagman, and then he’s involved with all of these women. There’s a sadness to it all for Hunter personally.

The real tragedy is that that these guys’ decisions are made by our government based on this family’s need to have a dysfunctional father-son relationship and the need of the Biden family to make bank off of dad’s influence.

Carmichael: Somebody will make that into a movie.

McCabe: A reporter from The New York Post has a book deal. Vish has said he’s going to be making this presentation around the country. He’s sort of putting together his own sort of tour. I don’t know how you keep it in the bag.

Carmichael: He’ll need to make sure he has a good security detail.

Leahy: I can tell you how you can keep it in the bag. Give it to the FBI and no one will ever see it again. (Laughter)

McCabe: The FBI had it. And then, of course, the FBI has done nothing. The Delaware State Police were given it because there may have been some problems with an underage child and that’s never seen the light of day.

And yet when Hunter puts out his book he gets the full treatment. I think he was on Ellen. I know was on Jimmy Kimmel. I know he was on the Today Show. He basically got the full mainstream media book tour treatment for a book that probably if it sold 20,000 copies total I’d be shocked.

Leahy: I guess the key element here of this is the utter corruption, if you will, of the mainstream media and reporting on this.

McCabe: It’s unbelievable that there is zero curiosity about any of this. A lot of people play up sort of the stuff that obviously there are prostitutes and there are other people where he makes Hunter makes videos, and the women, they seem to know that they’re being videoed.

But maybe they didn’t expect that Hunter would have an account with Porn Hub where he was loading up some of this stuff.

But even that stuff, which is kind of, like the worst part of our media, has been kind of ignored. But you look at how he’s working on behalf of this Chinese energy company, and he’s going to Mexico trying to purchase oil fields there.

He’s going to Romania to try to secure oil fields in Romania. He’s basically the frontman for the Chinese. So maybe people would be hesitant to do business with some Chicom guy. But, no, this is Hunter Biden of Joe Biden.

Well, okay, I’ll take that meeting. I’ll speak to Vice President Biden’s son. And now we know, as you were saying yesterday in Alex Marlow’s book, Hunter Biden was taking flights out of Andrews Air Force Base.

We know that when he was flying to do business in Mexico, he was flying with his dad on Air Force Two. We know he flew on Air Force Two to China and in Peter Sweitzer’s book. First, they go to Japan, and the Japanese sit down with Biden and they say, listen, we need you to play hardball with the Chinese because they’re seizing territory.

They’re claiming territory that’s supposed to either be a neutral territory or belonged to us. And they’re threatening to shoot down our airliners if our airliners do these air routes. You have to really get tough on the Chinese. Joe’s like, don’t worry about it. I got it. He and Hunter fly down to China, and they give up the shoe.

Leahy: They give the whole thing up.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Star News Network Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on the Ouster of Liz Cheney and Her Replacement

Star News Network Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on the Ouster of Liz Cheney and Her Replacement

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line to predict the fate of Liz Cheney being removed from her post as House Republican Conference Chair and her possible replacement.

Leahy: Joining us on the newsmaker line, the very best Washington Correspondent in the country, representing The Tennessee Star and the Star News Network, Neil McCabe. Good morning, Neil.

McCabe: Good morning, Michael. Good morning Crom. We’re all very excited about today’s big showdown.

Leahy: The big showdown of Liz Cheney, who’s been promoting herself so much, it even has irritated the minority leader, Kevin McCarthy. He’s sick of dealing with her. He wants to get her out of the House conference leadership position which is the number three position there. What’s going to happen today?

McCabe: They’re going to have the vote today and then they’re going to sort of have a round of sort of candidate events and people will have a chance to sort of lobby with their colleagues. Then they’ll have a vote to fill the position if it is vacated on Friday. And I think it’s interesting that one, it really has to have been irritating to McCarthy because the disposition is towards reaction, not action.

You’ve noticed this is a guy who has, I think, with vacancies he’s within three votes of taking over this Chamber. If he was to flip over, say, five to 10 conservative Democrats, he would be Speaker the House. He’s done nothing to present a positive agenda. He’s done nothing to sort of assuming that he’s that close. And he’s a very passive guy.

And basically, he just waits for Democrats to make a mistake. For him to actually stand up and say he’s going up against Cheney, that’s a big deal. And the other point is this is not a small office. She has a staff, about 50 people, and has her own sort of suite of offices associated with the Republican conference.

This is not just a token position or symbolic position. She is actively involved in running the Republican program in the House of Representatives, which makes it so galling that she’s come out against Trump. And, frankly, against the vast majority of House Republicans who not only support Trump but love him.

Leahy: What is Liz Cheney’s endgame? Why is she doing this?

McCabe: Well, as I wrote in The Tennessee Star for the Star News Network, Cheney is being backed by Team Ryan. Paul Ryan’s organization is backing her. His top aid and former chief of staff and someone who’s a senior advisor at his nonprofit called the American Idea Foundation, Kevin Seaford. He’s her senior advisor. Her fundraiser is a guy named Jeff Livingston, who’s been raising money for Paul Ryan, going back to 2004.

And other members of sort of Team Ryan and, of course, the Bush family and Mitt Romney have been sort of egging her on. I would say that Paul Ryan is the one who’s running this thing from the shadows. If she’s following his advice, she is a fool because Paul Ryan has never demonstrated any political acumen or skill, or competence.

This is the guy who was handed a 50 in-seat majority and did absolutely nothing with it. He was handed the largest House majority going back to 1928. More than 80 years and he torched it. Paul Ryan had 20 more seats than Newt Gingrich. And the fact that Liz Cheney is marching into the Valley of Death with Paul Ryan as the sort of coach and mentor is absurd.

Leahy: In the vote today, is she removed? Yes or no?

McCabe: Yes.

Carmichael: Will it be close?

McCabe: No. These people voted to oust her last time. 140 people voted to keep her and 60 said to get rid of her. They are going to flip that. She might get 60 saying ok. Look for Nancy Mace the freshman congresswoman from South Carolina who worked in the Trump campaign in 2016. She is also part of this Team Ryan political organization.

She didn’t vote to impeach but she’s been very negative of the President and presenting herself as the new face of the sort of post-Trump Republican Party. Watch Nancy Mace to see what she does. And if she votes against Cheney, then, you know it’s pathetic because Mace and Cheney are supposed to do a fundraiser in June.

Carmichael: Now, question, assuming that she does get beat, will she run for reelection?

McCabe: Oh, absolutely.

Carmichael: Really?

McCabe: She’s raised millions of dollars to her first quarter. She raised $1.5 million dollars, and she’ll keep raising money. There’s no reason. I mean, look at Andrew Cuomo in this political era, you don’t quit. She’s going to keep it going and she’s motivated by this belief that she is correct. And she really believed that there was nothing wrong with the way this election in 2020 was handled.

And she calls anyone who questions it, she says they are part of the big lie. And that’s absolutely galling. It’s galling to people who saw things with their own eyes.

Carmichael: I think that she wants to become the next Nicole Wallace. I think she’s applying for a gig. I’m predicting that if she loses, that she’ll put feelers out to join one of the networks in the news area so that she can have a much bigger platform than she’s going to have if she were to lose. And if she were to lose an election in Wyoming in the primary, then her value to a news network drops dramatically.

McCabe: She doesn’t want to give up this job. I mean, this is a great job. When you have a staff of 15, 20 people, you have your own offices, you have on your own agenda, and you have so much control over what the Republicans are up to znd plus her fundraising and leadership PAC and everything else, she doesn’t want to be deposed.

Carmichael: I know that but if she is deposed, then she loses all of that and becomes just a low-level member of the House and chairman of no positions that matter. If she loses in the primary, then she kind of becomes irrelevant.

McCabe: They really believe that Trump is finished. The Republican establishment has always believed that if we could just get rid of Trump, then people will be quiet. And then we can go along to get along. We can do business with China. We can bring in all the cheap labor. We can do the amnesty. President Romney would have given us amnesty. He would have given us an assault weapons ban and we’d be speaking Chinese right now.

Leahy: (Chuckles) That’s a good one. She’s going to be deposed today. When they vote for her replacement on Friday will Elise Stefanik be selected or somebody else?

McCabe: Well, there’s a lot of early momentum for Stefanik which surprised me because Jim Banks from Indiana, who’s the head of the Republican Study Committee, kind of had the inside position. It just seems like events unfolded and Banks wasn’t ready. And people are sort of mounting some rearguard actions against Stefanik because she has a pretty left-wing voting record.

But to her credit, she went after the Russian collusion hoax. She defended the President left, right, and center during the 2020 campaign. And that’s what people want right now. People want someone who’s willing to fight for this party, either you are in the party or your not.

Leahy: Because she represents the district of upstate New York where I grew up until I was, like, 12 years old, very far North. She’s a very clever person. She came in sort of under the wing of John Boehner. So she’s kind of a middle-of-the-road Republican. But she seems to understand power. She seems to understand the public, which is why, even though she’s got a very middle-of-the-road voting record, she’s defended Trump very very successfully. So bottom line, do you think she has it?

McCabe: Yeah. She was very close to Ryan until she figured out she could raise five million dollars ‘defending Trump.’ If she can raise money, she’ll defend Trump. She wins.

Leahy: I think you’re exactly right in that.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on His Breaking Story as GOP Challenger Bouchard Gains Funding in Takedown of Cheney

Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on His Breaking Story as GOP Challenger Bouchard Gains Funding in Takedown of Cheney

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line who weighed in on his recent story regarding Liz Cheney and her challenger Senator Bouchard gaining ground in fundraising efforts to oust her.

Leahy: On the newsmaker line, the best Washington correspondent in the country and the Washington Correspondent for The Tennessee Star and the Star News Network, Neil McCabe. Good morning, Neil.

McCabe: (Inaudible talk) 

Leahy: So you are making news left and right again! Your story. GOP challenger Bouchard, a state Senator in Wyoming, raises more than $400,000 to fund his takedown of Congresswoman Liz Cheney in Wyoming. This story went up on Monday, and it is ricocheting around the Internet because all the Washington press corps is retweeting it.

McCabe: You can’t study the end of the Civil War without recognizing that the fall of Atlanta was the end because the Confederacy was making loans against the cotton in those warehouses. Once they lost the ability to borrow money, the war was over even though it continued for another year or so. And money is the mother’s milk of politics.

It’s the mother’s milk of war. And when you have a guy that nobody has heard of, a state Senator from Wyoming, Anthony Bouchard, who is able to raise $400,000 right out of the gate to oppose not only the daughter of a vice-president, of course, Dick Cheney, but also the number three in the House Republican leadership. That is significant. Cheney should have no problem raising money herself.

Of course, she’s raised one and a half million so far. But of course, that’s from Super PACs and that’s from the establishment Republicans like Mitt Romney and, of course, Paul Ryan and a host of other people. You would not be surprised if the number three in the House Republican leadership was able to raise money. And that just makes it even more shocking because Bouchard is able to raise money.

And being such an underdog, who would even expect him to be able to win against her? And I believe that there are people who aren’t even sure if he can win or not, they just want to leave a bruise on Cheney. And now we’re seeing reported yesterday, and I can tell you what was interesting about Washington’s weather yesterday. It was thunder, lightning, hail storms (Chuckles).

It was biblical just as the news broke that Kevin McCarthy was making phone calls to oust Liz Cheney as the number three, basically the chairwoman of the House Republican Conference. This is really stunning because you’ve been following this for a long time, Michael. When was the last time midstream any party, let alone the Republicans, would get rid of such a senior person? It’s absolutely unheard of. I can’t think of one time. Maybe you can.

Leahy: She’s a Never Trumper. She was one of 10 members of the Republican House who voted to impeach President Trump the second time around. President Trump has said that one of his top priorities is to make sure she’s defeated in the 2022 Republican primary in Wyoming. Wyoming has only 700,000 people.

McCabe: Hold on Mike. Only 700,000? Listen, you have to understand for Mike, these are just flyover states for Mike.

Carmichael: (Leahy laughs) That’s true. He was born on the East Coast.

Leahy: There you go.

Carmichael: And went to Stanford.

Leahy: You got me there, guys. So that’s funny. Former President Trump has said a priority is going to be to defeat Liz Cheney in the Wyoming Republican primary in 2022. What’s interesting is if there are multiple candidates that will diffuse that objective. Will President Trump come out in the near term to name who he’s endorsing in the Wyoming primary in the House of Representatives?

McCabe: We could see a vulture move, and that’s where sort of Washington sort of corporate conservative forces say, hey, blood is in the water. If this guy is raising a ton of money, we can raise a ton of money. Why should we let this guy have it when we can put in our own stooge and we can just sort of run this, we can basically steal this seat ourselves?

And what they’ll probably do is split the vote and give Cheney a hall pass. We saw a similar thing with me Mia Love in Utah, where they basically took this former flight attendant and actress and moved her to Utah and made her a mayor, and then they ran her for Congress. Or even with AOC, where you basically just take somebody and then you put some muscle behind them and you put them in Congress.

I think that Bouchard, though, is not going to roll over for that. Number one, he’s in the state Senate. Number two, he’s raising this money not just because people can’t stand Liz Cheney and a lot of people loathe her. But he was also the founder of Wyoming Gun Owners. He also was very active in trying to opposing Obamacare back in the day. He has his own network of activists and operators and contributors.

I don’t see someone being able to pull it off. You’ll notice that when Matt Gaetz flew in for that rally against Cheney, he did not invite Bouchard and Bouchard did not invite himself. He sort of stayed away from it. But he was running ads statewide in Wyoming for himself. He had the money to run ads and just remind everybody that he’s the guy. I will also say that previously I wrote about how Mark Meadows said that the House Freedom Caucus is going to pick the next Speaker.

Well, at that fundraiser on April 27th at Mar-a-Lago, not only was Mark Meadows there with President Trump raising money for the House Freedom Fund, but Jim DeMint was there and people associated with Jim DeMint were there, which is a very positive sign. But also Bushard met with DeMint’s people. And I can reveal to you that he was actually at that fundraiser. Bouchard told me that but he didn’t want to make it public. I figured once he tweeted it out himself, I think that lifted the veil of confidentiality.

Leahy: Last question for you, Neil McCabe. Will former President Trump endorse State Senator Anthony Bouchard’s challenge to Liz Cheney in Wyoming?

McCabe: Yes, he will. There are people fighting because we see Trump’s influence as we did in Texas six. The vultures who want to steal this thing, they’re the ones blocking the endorsement. But I believe it’ll be inevitable because Bouchard is the only game in town.

Carmichael: Cheney is doubling down because she’s called anyone who believes that the 2020 election was stolen, she says that’s a big lie. She says it was a perfectly legitimate election and that Biden won fair and square. She is doubling down.

McCabe: I’m working on this, so I haven’t really submitted it yet. But I can tell you that Cheney is not operating on her own. She is part of a larger network of people who are opposed to Donald Trump and the conservative movement in the Republican Party. And I’m in the process of connecting some dots. So that will be my next contribution to the Star News Network.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Anthony Bouchard” by Anthony Bouchard. 

 

 

 

 

 

Star News Network Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on Trump Move to New Jersey and Next House Freedom Caucus Speaker

Star News Network Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on Trump Move to New Jersey and Next House Freedom Caucus Speaker

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line who speculated Donald Trump’s move to New Jersey, a Ron DeSantis VP ticket, and his recent article about the choice for House Freedom Caucus Speaker.

Leahy: On the newsmaker line, the very best Washington correspondent in the country. The Washington Correspondent for The Tennessee Star and the Star News Network. Neil McCabe. Good morning, Neil.

McCabe: How you doing, Michael? Very good to be with you.

Leahy: Well, you have a great story on Mark Meadows. But before I get to that, here’s the big question for you today. A report in The Daily Caller that President Trump is moving his residence from Florida to New Jersey. Former President Trump. Does that have any possible implications for 2024 Neil McCabe?

McCabe: Well, I think as a practical matter with his location in Bedminster, New Jersey basically puts him an hour from Manhattan and three hours from D.C. So it just facilitates moving, meeting with people. Whether it’s fundraisers or operatives or even members of Congress and being able for him to reach out to people or people being able to reach him within a three-hour drive.

Or if you take a private jet or even if you drove from D.C. all of a sudden, meeting with Trump is a day trip. It’s not an overnight stay or something like that, which is what’s going down at Mar-a-Lago. But the second thing is that it is just practical. I lived in Tampa, Florida, for two years. I thought the summers were going to kill me.

To survive in Florida you basically move from one air-conditioned space to another air-conditioned space. And there are moments when you leave the car and in between leaving the car and getting into the Starbucks, you’re attacked by the heat down there. And if it wasn’t for air conditioning, you wouldn’t even have Florida. (Laughter) Seriously, the heat there will kill you.

Leahy: So let me tell you what I read into this. If Donald Trump is a resident of New Jersey and not Florida, that means there is no political penalty to him if he runs in 2024 in a ticket that he heads as president and Ron DeSantis the governor, Florida as vice president. What do you think of that?

McCabe: Well, I think that that is very much in play. And I think you saw the same pictures that I saw of President Trump talking with De Santis at that fundraiser for the National Republican Senate Committee. And there’s definitely a primary going on for vice president. I think Pompeo is very excited about that. And it’s like in NASCAR, you ride behind another car. Basically, he’s breaking through the wind and you’re just sort of hiding behind it.

Leahy: Drafting off them.

McCabe: Right. This is what Ted Cruz tried to do in the 2016 campaign, but just Trump got too far ahead and Cruz could never pull the move that he wanted to pull. I think that definitely, that’s what Pompeo is doing. I think DeSantis is very busy being the governor of Florida right now. But there are some other people in the veep sweepstakes. But I think that definitely, that is in play, Mike. But I think transferring your residence from Florida, which has no income tax, to New Jersey, which has nothing but tax, he may put that off for a year or two.

Leahy: Exactly.

McCabe: And keep some money in his pocket.

Leahy: Your story at the tenesseestar.com and throughout our constellation of Star News Network sites now in seven States, Mark Meadows Vows: ‘The House Freedom Caucus Is Choosing the Next Speaker. Tell us about that story.

McCabe: So Saturday, there was a fundraiser for the House Freedom Fund, which is the political action committee associated with the House Freedom Caucus. And so Trump was there and Meadows was there who spoke after Trump. And as he was walking off the platform, it wasn’t really a stage, but there was a platform set up.

And as he was walking back to his seat, he told people within earshot that the Freedom Caucus is choosing the next Speaker. This is not an idle boast because Mark Meadows is the guy who took down John Boehner. And Mark Meadows was also working behind the scenes to block Kevin McCarthy from becoming Speaker. Unfortunately, as things were moving around and our dear friend Matt Boyle was covering this at Breitbart, Boyle told me that Marsha Blackburn was going to be set up to be the conservative candidate for Speaker.

And they scrambled to get Paul Ryan before Blackburn could put things together. When Mark Meadows says he’s going to choose the next Speaker, there’s a very good chance he is going to choose the next Speaker. And what it means is that Kevin McCarthy does not have the confidence of Meadows or Trump or Jim DeMint, who was also at that fundraiser Saturday. And remember that the House Republicans at their annual retreat in Orlando, which is about two and a half hours up the street from Palm Beach, didn’t invite Trump.

Liz Cheney, as the head of the Republican Conference, she owns that retreat. That’s run by her staff. That’s like her event every year. So obviously, Liz Cheney, who basically tells anyone who will listen that Trump is a criminal and a traitor, didn’t want him there. But the fact that McCarthy would not insist on bringing Trump tells you that McCarthy is afraid of his own shadow and he’s always going to take the coward’s choice.

Leahy: I think you’re probably right on that. Ben Cunningham has a question for you.

Cunningham: Hey, Neil.

McCabe: Hey.

Cunningham: James Carville has been getting a lot of press with his critique of Democrats and the threat of wokeness to their 2022 prospects. Is that reflective of the Democrats in general? Do they understand this as a real threat or is Carville just kind of trying to get back into the news cycle now?

McCabe: No. He’s correct. Everyone understands that this is not a mystery. It’s just that you have to choose. Are you going to play the long game or you’re going to play the short con? And right now, Biden is playing the short con. He is playing smash and grab.

Cunningham: That’s a great point.

McCabe: And this is typical that all of the consequential Democratic presidents. If you look at what Barack Obama did in his first two years, Dodd Frank, ObamaCare is the law of the land. Obama may have lost the Senate and he may have lost the House and he may have been embarrassed, but his priorities and his legislation are the law of the land.

What Johnson did in his first two years, Medicare and all that other stuff, that’s the law of the land. And it’s been 60 years. In the first two years, the Democrats have learned to just go for it. Smash and grab. And if they lose the House and they lose the Senate, who cares? Democrats are worried about the agenda. Republicans are like, oh, no, we’ll lose our majority.

Republicans would prefer to have a majority and do nothing with it because they’re afraid of losing a majority. This is the problem that Conservatives have because we’re stuck with the Republican Party. But the Republican Party has no interest in advancing our concerns.

Leahy: What is the impact, Neil, of the redistricting now with the census? Texas picks up two seats. Florida picks up a seat. New York loses one. California loses one. Michigan loses one. We got one minute left, Neil.

McCabe: I was surprised that Florida didn’t pick up an extra one. But what you’re seeing is that old blue States are losing out, and it’s going to be critical in their culturally conservative States where the unions are very strong. And that’s why Biden is pushing this pro-union legislation because States like Kentucky, Colorado, or Montana have active Democratic parties even though they’re conservative States because of the union.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio