Thursday, July 31, 2014


I know I'm supposed to regard this as a tremendous black eye for Republicans, and for John Boehner in particular -- and obviously it is in the eyes of political insiders and mavens. But are any Republicans actually going to be punished for this in a way that's going to sting?
House GOP leaders pulled a Thursday vote on their $659 million border bill after failing to win over conservative members who opposed giving any more money to President Obama.

A significant number of Republicans had balked at sending any money to the White House for the border, and Democrats were generally united in opposing the measure....

The decision to pull the bill is another defeat for House GOP leaders, who have repeatedly failed to bring their members in line on tough votes....
Yes, I know that the sequence of events was humiliating for Boehner:
The GOP leadership had originally intended to pass a limited spending measure to bolster border security.... But the tea party wing of the House -- inspired and encouraged by {Senator Ted] Cruz -- revolted against Boehner and refused to go along with the spending bill. The House border-security measure would have appropriated $659 million in emergency spending, far less than the $3.7 billion that President Obama had requested. But it was still too much for many GOPers and it lacked the hardline, anti-immigration reform provisions many Republicans craved.

... according to Politico, Cruz gathered a group of conservative House Republicans in his Senate office Wednesday night and convinced them to insist on a vote to strike down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in exchange for supporting Boehner's border bill.

By Thursday morning House leadership had yielded to that Cruz-driven demand, and a bill to revoke DACA was on the docket for the afternoon....

Throwing the far-right wing the DACA-vote bone wasn't enough. On Thursday afternoon, Boehner, after meeting with his caucus, abandoned ship. He canceled the vote on the border security measure, no doubt because he didn't have enough Republican votes to pass it....
But here's my question: Which Republican is going to lose an election in November because of this? I assume the answer is "None of them." This makes House Republicans look like terrible public servants who accomplish nothing on behalf of the American people. But America already regarded House Republicans that way before today, and they were poised to hold pretty much every seat they hold now, largely because of gerrymandering, while their party was -- and still is -- certain to gain seats in the Senate, quite possibly enough to gain control.

Does anyone seriously think any of that has changed?

In fact, these clowns have probably increased their appeal to the Fox-addled voting base of their party. And even if a handful of swing voters now have a blinding flash of insight and realize that Republican legislators are outright frauds, in what district is the race close enough to matter? Name me one.

And yes, John Boehner was exposed, yet again, as a gutless wonder. But so what? He lets the crazies run wild, so when the time comes to vote for a Speaker again, there's an excellent chance they'll stick with him. He throws so many sops to the crazies, and goes on TV to parrot so many of the crazies' talking points, that he didn't face a Dave Brat or Chris McDaniel in a primary this year, so he's going to cruise to reelection. I've been led to believe that he has a residual interest in governing, but saving his own ass is obviously a much higher priority -- and if letting himself be dominated by Ted Cruz is what gets that accomplished, he'll do it.

This looks like an awful day for him -- but weeks from now, when the dust settles and the snark subsides, the mainstream press will still treat him as a "serious" Republican and the crazies will remember that he let them trash the place. So he'll just be just fine.

So will the rest of these bastards, until we find a way to make them pay a price for this nonsense.

I'm not holding my breath.


Raymond Smith said...

You have your opinion which it just fine. But in politics no one can predict the outcome until after ALL the votes are counted. What will decide is whether or not the Democratic Party members recognize that this current Congress is a result of them not choosing to participate and vote.
They need to grasp the reality of not showing up to vote is the same as a vote for the GOP and all of the policies they support. Until ALL recognize the importance and value of each and every vote this country will suffer.

Zandar said...

I'm still going to go down swinging, Steve. Even in a Kentucky district pitting a Glibertarian douchebag versus an avowed Tea Party Democrat.

Victor said...

All of that's true.
But I think real members of the Democratic Party do show up and vote.
The problem is the Independents and those who are not as involved in politics as some of us blog readers are, who don't vote in midterm elections.

But don't forget, the GOP also is working hard to suppress the vote of people who might lean towards the Democrats - minorities, women, and the young.

Yastreblyansky said...

Yesterday's Boehner fail is really just for us (made me watch MSNBC, like going to a pep rally, where our hosts were in top form and hilarious); most independents aren't going to hear about it or are going to hear in such confused form that it will have no effect. Still I think their haplessness and incapacity is starting to show to the public at large, maybe not fast enough. Sorry about your Alison, Zandar. Still be fun if she wins.