From the Supreme Court to the halls of Congress to governor’s mansions across the country, conservatives have ruthlessly pushed an agenda that has torn America asunder since 1980. As 2011 comes to a close, conservatives are still trying to push failed policies. This is a list of 15 individual conservatives that pose a significant threat to American society as we move into 2012 and beyond.
1. John Roberts) The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court leads four other conservative judges on the bench. Placed on the high court by President Bush, John Roberts has been influential in changing campaign finance laws (Citizens United) and has since ruled in favor of big corporations. And the conservative court isn’t through yet. Conservatives desire to overturn abortion, environmental laws, President Obama’s health care law, and voting rights laws, and you can bet that they are aiming to use the Supreme Court to do it.
2. Eric Cantor) The House Majority Leader has been very busy since his party took over the House in 2010. Cantor has proven that he has more power than John Boehner does, hence the fact that Boehner isn’t even on the list. Cantor is willing to do whatever it takes to slam every right-wing bill through Congress. He also has the backing of Tea Party House members. Cantor is still young, which means he could be a major player on the right for decades to come. It’s also likely that he could be the next Speaker of the House if the GOP keeps control after the 2012 Election.
3. Clarence Thomas) The second Supreme Court Justice to make the list has deep ties to the conservative movement. He has ties to Koch Industries and has received money from the Heritage Foundation and other conservative organizations. He has refused to recuse himself from cases that he has ties to and that is what makes him dangerous. Thomas ruled with the other conservatives in Citizens United even though he had a conflict of interest in that case as well. As long as he is on the bench with Roberts, outside influences can dictate how the conservative wing rules.
4. Mitch McConnell) He may be the Senate Minority Leader but that doesn’t make McConnell any less poisonous to America. He has led the effort to block and stall many important pieces of legislation in the Senate and has blocked Presidential nominees from taking their posts, leaving many departments leaderless. We’ll see more of the same thing in 2012.
5. Paul Ryan) The second member of the U.S. House of Representatives to make the list, Ryan is a major threat because he introduced legislation that would kill Medicare by privatizing it. Essentially, Ryan’s plan throws all American senior citizens under a speeding bus. Ryan isn’t an old man either. He could remain active in politics for decades, which means his ideas will still be around as well. Even if the people of Wisconsin don’t re-elect him to Congress, Ryan could still join any conservative think tank or organization, or become a lobbyist. They would love to have him too. Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare are in danger as long as Ryan is around.
6. Scott Walker) The first of two governors on the list has been busy since he took office. The Governor of Wisconsin is on this list because he is an example of just how involved the Koch brothers are in shaping public policy. Under Walker’s “leadership” he has severely weakened labor unions and worker’s rights, weakened environmental laws, weakened pubic education, weakened voter rights, and has put public lands and facilities up for grabs as a way to increase privatization. Some of these facilities are of deep interest to the Koch brothers. As further evidence that Walker is basically a Koch slave, he took a fake call from a person pretending to be David Koch at the height of the collective bargaining debate. Walker could very well be recalled by the people of Wisconsin but Walker intends to sabotage that effort. Walker’s career in Wisconsin may not last beyond this year, but that doesn’t make him any less of a threat, as governors around the country are following his lead and he could always run for federal office later on.
7. Chris Christie) The Governor of New Jersey is the second governor on the list because he has been instrumental in weakening collective bargaining rights, public education, infrastructure, etc… Like Walker, Christie has put a lot of strain on the poor and middle class to benefit corporations and the wealthy. He is a shameless bully that abuses his position on a daily basis. Unlike Walker, however, Christie has his eye on the Presidency in 2016 and if you think Republicans don’t compromise with Democrats now, just imagine if Christie were in the White House. And that scenario is precisely why he is on the list.
8. Michele Bachmann) She is by far the craziest conservative serving in the House of Representatives and she is running for President which makes her a frightening politician and a dangerous one as well. And it looks like she will continue her Presidential bid deep into 2012. Bachmann is a major Christian Right Wing nut and she knows absolutely nothing about American history. She has already signed a pledge to persecute the LGBT community and has promised Christian fundamentalists that Christianity will play a dominant role in government if she is elected. Bachmann would also ban abortion for any reason and would make life hard for the unemployed and the poor. Stupid and crazy is never a good combination and Bachmann has both in spades.
9. Reince Priebus) The current Chairman of the RNC is the big reason why Wisconsin got saddled with Scott Walker as Governor and why Republicans control the legislature there. As Chairman of the RNC, he aims to screw over the United States as much as he screwed over Wisconsin. And the RNC is a major money player in national and state elections across the country. If he can architect a landslide victory for conservative extremists in Wisconsin, he can do the same nationally and that is why Priebus makes the list. That, and the fact that he once made a Freudian slip about assassinating President Obama.
10. Fred Upton) The Chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce is also a major Koch brothers lackey. As such, he is committed to ending the Environmental Protection Agency and giving the Koch brothers free rein to pollute the air, the water, and the land. Being in the pocket of the Kochs makes Upton a very dangerous player in Congress and as his term comes to a close, Upton will try to speed along his destructive Koch agenda.
11. Ron Paul) Michele Bachmann is crazy, but Ron Paul is crazy with a rabid following of supporters. Paul has a history of racism, is supported by the Ku Klux Klan, and wants anarchy in America. If Paul were to capture the Presidency, he would make the federal government powerless in both domestic policy and foreign policy. Paul would destroy Social Security, Medicare, public education, the EPA, and would withdraw the United States from international participation. Paul also believes states have the right to secede and would more than likely support states that choose to become independent nations. Ron Paul would allow the dismantling of America which makes him perhaps the most dangerous man on the list. And don’t forget, Ron Paul also has a son that may have an eye on the White House as well.
12. Samuel Alito) Samuel Alito is yet another Supreme Court Justice on the list. And like all the others, he is dangerous because he will decide in favor of big corporations and other conservative groups who wish to challenge everything from health care to abortion to gay marriage. Alito, like Roberts, is a Bush nominee, which makes him at least as dangerous as Bush, but the fact that he will serve for life on the court makes him more dangerous.
13. John McCain) Once a stalwart of compromise and crossing the aisle to get things done, McCain has since become a hawkish die-hard conservative. McCain may not be President and he never will be, but he is still a dangerous politician. The longtime Arizona Senator still wields considerable influence in Congress and is one the strongest proponents for war with Iran. Many have since joined him in pushing for such a war. War with Iran would be disastrous and that is why McCain makes the list.
14. Antonin Scalia) And a fourth Supreme Court Justice makes the list. Why? Because he votes overwhelmingly with his conservative colleagues in favor of big corporations, and against civil rights, disregarding all the precedents set by past courts and laws passed by Congress. Given the divided nature of the court these past few years, it’s likely that Scalia will keep voting the way conservatives want him to.
15. Rand Paul) The demon spawn of Ron Paul, Rand Paul would do everything his father would do and then some. He’s a Senator, and he has blocked many a bill since taking office. He has been vocal about wanting to repeal the Civil Rights Act, and has attempted to block safety regulations and oversight regulations. If Ron Paul ever stops running for President, you can bet that Rand Paul will take up where his father left off. That means Paul could be a threat for decades to come.
All in all, the four Supreme Court Justices on this list are by far the most dangerous conservative government officials. They aren’t elected by the people and they never will have to answer for their extreme decisions. They will be on the high court for life which means they are in a position to strike down anything as unconstitutional that the extreme right-wing doesn’t like, from Social Security to Medicare, to the Civil Rights Act, to Roe v. Wade, and any other legislation that conservatives hate. All the other conservatives on the list can be voted out of office by the American electorate. As America enters 2012, we need to keep a sharp eye on these dangerous conservatives and we must seek to unseat them, because if we don’t, we can expect another thirty years of failed policies that only benefit the wealthy and the conservative effort to rule America.