Like a lot of other media types in Minnesota this week, I was intrigued by the fact that Grover Norquist was on the agenda to speak on Ron Paul’s Rally for the Republic. Norquist is a bold, outspoken kind of guy not afraid to overreach rhetorically and not afraid to say something mean about a Republican now and again. But at the same time, he’s very much a pillar of the conservative establishment — was he really going to talk to a movement that’s so furiously opposed to mainstream American conservatism?
Well, he was. But for those of us hoping for something interesting to happen, it was a huge disappointment. He delivered a straightforwardly partisan speech that barely deviated from his standard talk about the Leave Us Alone Coalition against the devious liberals. He tossed the odd brickbat in the direction of overspending congressional Republicans, but praised the GOP for its slavish adherence to his “no tax” pledge at the federal level, and saved all his ire for the usual Norquistian rogues’ gallery of public school teachers, poor people in need of public assistance, environmentalists, and civil servants more broadly.
All of which sort of leaves me wondering why he bothered.