Phyllis Schlafly assails GOP establishment for trying to coronate Jeb Bush

By Ralph Z. Hallow – The Washington Times – Sunday, February 22, 2015

Phyllis Schlafly has long argued that the American conservative movement’s purpose is to influence, not echo, the Republican Party.

And still going strong at age 90, Mrs. Schlafly wants to influence the GOP anew by warning against letting the party’s “kingmakers” — the Wall Street elite and political consultant class — coronate former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as the presidential nominee in 2016.

Mincing no words, Mrs. Schlafly makes her case in a 2015 update to her landmark book a half-century ago titled “A Choice, Not an Echo,” which in 1964 became the motto of Barry Goldwater’s grassroots movement.

In her update, Mrs. Schlafly argues that her party picks losers as candidates too often because of a stranglehold by the political consultant-big business-Wall Street crowd, which she argues makes a bundle from championing moderates over conservatives.

She warns that may be happening again in 2016 in the persona of Jeb Bush.

She notes “closed-door events have been held for Republican mega-donors to select who will get the big money that went last time to Mitt Romney” and that the mainstream media already are cheering on Mr. Bush.

As evidence, she cites a New York Times article about how “Jeb Bush is so smart, so intellectual, and so well-read. We were told that he is a ‘top-drawer intellect’ and a voracious reader who maintains 25 books on his Kindle, books such as George Gilder’s ‘Knowledge and Power.’”

Mrs. Schlafly urges grassroots conservatives to rise up and resist a coronation of Mr. Bush.

“Do you get the message that the media buildup for Jeb Bush has begun and that the 2016 Republican National Convention may simply nominate for president another Establishment loser candidate?,” she writes. “But it doesn’t have to be. Some of us remember Everett Dirksen’s famous speech at the 1952 Republican Convention when he publicly taunted the kingmakers, ‘We followed you before and you led us down the path to defeat.’”

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