“Elite Republican strategists and donors” Republicans told Politico’s Mike Allen and Jim Vandehei that the Republican Party is in worse shape than it was after the disastrous 2012 election. In fact, it’s heading for a 2016 disaster. One of the indications of the impending disaster is the fact that Republicans who tried to stand up to the fringe lunatics, like Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), were “swatted into submission”.
The “influential” Republicans made a case for why things are worse, not better, for the GOP in spite of their post mortems and efforts to rebrand. They told Politico:
• The party is hurting itself even more with the very voters they need to start winning back: Hispanics, blacks, gays, women and swing voters of all stripes.
• The few Republicans who stood up and tried to move the party ahead were swatted into submission: Speaker John Boehner on fiscal matters and Sen. Marco Rubio on immigration are the poster boys for this.
• Republicans are all flirting with a fall that could see influential party voices threatening to default on the debt or shut down the government — and therefore ending all hopes of proving they are not insane when it comes to governance.
These are not new ideas for those who pay attention (and that doesn’t include most elected Republicans, which is made obvious by their clueless public statements). But they are a pretty desperate move to save a party heading for its “eve of destruction”.
Who would go so far as to point out that poor John Boehner has been rendered impotent by the fringe parasites that now run the House? Who would point out that shutting down the government in yet another fit of pique is not a super plan for 2016? Who knows that the party needs to work on immigration reform and maybe knocking back the minority hate and women hate a few notches?
Sure, “elite strategists and donors”, but you know who else has been desperately trying to make the same point from the trenches? A few Senate Republicans like John McCain (R-AZ), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Bob Corker (R-TN) are becoming desperate to save that chamber from the same tea infestation that has destroyed the House of Representatives.
Yes, John McCain, who led the Hate Talk Express campaign of 2008 that included his running mate telling crowds that Obama was “pallin’ around with terrorists”, is now the pragmatic center of what’s left of the Republican Party. Johnny Isakson, Lindsey Graham and Bob Corker aren’t exactly my idea of moderation either.
Suddenly they are the sane, moderate, pragmatic “wing” of the GOP. They are pushing for a budget that isn’t crazy, that might actually pass.
The House fell flat on its face over its Ryan budget rhetoric. When at last confronted with the reality of budget making, they failed to implement the cuts in the lonely four appropriations bills they managed to pass.
If the “pragmatic” wing of the GOP (are a few lonely senators really a “wing”?) get their way, they will force Boehner violate Hastert’s rule, an informal rule that conservatives have been ramming down Boehner’s throat with much success. Hastert’s rule is known as the “majority of the majority” rule because the Speaker won’t allow a vote on anything unless it’s supported by the majority of the majority. It’s been used by Republican Speakers since the mid ’90s to limit the power of the minority party. (See how Republicans do the opposite in the Senate with filibuster abuse? Nifty trick.)
Why will the Speaker have to violate Hastert’s rule? Because Boehner can’t get anything done in the House without Democrats. That means that all of this Tea-posturing will either result in an unfunded government again (not exactly winning), or a budget that wins enough Democrats over to actually earn their vote.
But Boehner has been “swatted into submission” by a party that only respects the surviving predator. Boehner is a loser in their eyes, because he let himself be ordered around by them. With the authoritarians, only the brutal and unfeeling win. Boehner showed a bit too much humanity in trying to actually do his job, and he’s been duly humiliated for it.
There aren’t any signs that Boehner has the fortitude to stand up to the Tea bullies, regardless of the fact that 2016 is at stake. The toxic blend of hubristic stupidity combined with the vicious arrogance of the Tea fringers surprised some Republicans, but that’s only because they weren’t paying attention. They loved the nihilistic, jihadist insanity of the Tea Party when it was aimed at Democrats. It just never occurred to Republicans that they would be on the Tea hit list one day. And that is just another reason why it behooves politicians to read and believe history.
Swatted into submission? Speaker Boehner has lost all pride along with whatever once passed for his integrity. He’s not a leader; he’s a fearful coward skirting the next inevitable public Tea-spanking. What makes this even sadder is the fact that were Boehner to be replaced, his replacement would make him look like a high-functioning, adept leader.