February 13, 2011
The conservative movement in the United States is at war – with itself. The battle is over government spending, and for the first time in a generation, the knives are being sharpened for that most sacred cow of the Republican party: the $700bn – and rising – defence budget (pdf).
What had been a relatively low-grade domestic dispute between the Republican party establishment and the libertarian-minded Tea Party movement boiled over into the public arena during this week’s CPAC conference in Washington – an annual gathering of conservative political groups. Supporters of the newly-elected US Senator Rand Paul – a Tea Party favourite and son of the erstwhile libertarian and prospective 2012 Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul – jeered and booed the former defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, as he was presented with a “defender of the constitution” award by former Vice-President Dick Cheney. Amid shouts of “Where’s Bin Laden?” Paul’s supporters staged a walkout during Rumsfeld’s acceptance speech for a prize that, for Republicans, is akin to the lifetime achievement award handed out each year at the Oscars.
The Reopen America Back to School Special is now live! Earn double Patriot Points on our hottest items!