To the Editor:
Every Republican member of Congress has signed, and is obligated to adhere to, the “Norquist Pledge.” The pledge prohibits supporting any legislative action that raises taxes of any kind, ever. Despite the implied limitation, there is no evidence that Mr. Grover Norquist restricts his granting of approval to that single issue.
If a member of Congress fails to comply with the pledge and attempts to get re-elected, it results in a primary race against a heavily financed opponent chosen by Norquist.
The example of Lincoln Chafee, former Republican senator from Rhode Island, has proved sufficient to keep everyone in line. New Republican candidates for Congress are also asked to sign the pledge. Those who refuse see their candidacy end in a Norquist-orchestrated primary.
All but one of the 2012 Republican candidates for president signed the pledge, and Mr. Norquist claims to have 1,600 state legislators under his control as well. The objective, of course, is to starve government, thereby eliminating those government functions of which Norquist does not approve. He has said that he wants to make government small enough to fit in your mailbox.
If you thought that you were choosing the Republican that you want to represent you in Congress, you have been mistaken. You merely get to approve the candidate that Grover Norquist has deemed acceptable.