The House Freedom Caucus is where you can find true conservatism in Washington. Yesterday afternoon at the Resurgent Gathering here in Atlanta, two members of the caucus sat down with Erick Erickson to talk about what they believe in and why they fight for conservative values.
GOP Representatives Mark Meadows of North Carolina and Jody Hice of Georgia (my congressman) chatted with Erick about the reasons why they stand up against the tide of Washington and often against the Republican establishment.
“I’ve said that some members of the Republican congress have the backbone of a banana,” laughed Meadows about his less bold GOP colleagues. “Some of them got offended. But I say when the back brace fits, wear it.”
For Hice, his bold commitment to freedom comes down to representing the people of his district rather than anyone in the nation’s capitol.
“You’re either going to be loved by the people back home and hated in Washington, or [vice versa],” he said. “The House Freedom Caucus has gained in power and influence, and we’re hated in Washington for it.”
But it’s worth it, said Hice, because, “We’re in the fight of our lives in this country.”
Both congressmen pointed out that voters can’t take for granted that Republicans are conservative by default.
“Hopefully we’re true north when it comes to what’s conservative and what’s best for the country, said Meadows about his House Freedom Caucus colleagues, and he cautioned, “If you have to ask me whether your member of Congress is conservative or not, you have a problem.”
Hice noted that taking bold conservatives stands doesn’t exactly make him and his colleagues popular in Congress.
“There’s a double standard in Washington,” he said. “If you’re a Christian constitutional conservative, you’re going to have a bullseye on you. We have to have people who are aware that there’s a double standard but don’t care and will do the right thing.”
But it’s worth it to have the opportunity to take a stand against a new wave of socialism.
“It’s all about taking our country back,” Hice declared. “Never in a million years did we think that we would have to fight against socialism, but the momentum behind socialism is real. Thank God we have a leader in the White House who is willing to keep promises.”
Meadows echoes the gratefulness toward President Trump for listening to conservatives and their ideas.
“This president doesn’t just give lip service to conservatives,” Meadows noted. “He wants to hear from us.”
Both Meadows and Hice are fully aware that it’s time for voters to insist on conservative representation in Congress.
“Some of you have duds for congressmen, laughed Meadows. “It’s time to eject the shell.” He encouraged citizens, “Do not censor yourself. Speak up.”
“America is ready to see fighters,” Hice noted, but he also made clear that, “We have to be careful with vetting candidates, getting behind those who will be true, and supporting those who have been.”
Hice and Meadows cling to their genuine Christian faith to help them through both good and bad times.
“Faith is the only thing that keeps me grounded,” Meadows said, as he talked about how he and his wife study the Bible and pray daily. He reminded everyone in attendance, “Don’t go after the approval of man, because you’re not always going to get it.”
“I’ve never seen and lived in an environment so hostile to faith than now,” said Hice as he talked about his routine of prayer and Bible study. He said that his years of pastoral ministry have prepared him to cling to Jesus since he’s been serving in Congress.
“Pray for protection,” Meadows encouraged. “The enemy is real.”
I’m grateful for both men (particularly Jody Hice, since he represents my district) and their service. Here’s to more conservative leadership from them and other House Freedom Caucus members.