In a private meeting, John Boehner explained to his fellow Republicans why they should cave on the debt ceiling. Boehner warned House Republicans if they didn’t pass a clean debt ceiling increase, something they didn’t like could happen — like an extension of unemployment benefits.
According to Roll Call:
Just days away from the administration’s deadline to extend the nation’s borrowing authority, Speaker John A. Boehner told House Republicans he sees no reason to pick a fight they cannot win on the issue.
“There’s no sense picking a fight we can’t win,” the Ohio Republican told members in a private conference meeting, according to sources in the room.
Leadership has been looking for a plan that could draw Republican support for a debt limit increase, and Boehner urged his members to coalesce around a plan. If they do not, he warned, the Senate could move first and tack a provision to a debt limit hike that is unpopular among Republicans, such as an extension of unemployment insurance benefits.
The Republican Party is so warped that John Boehner used helping the unemployed as a threat to get his fellow Republicans in line. Help for the unemployed apparently goes against everything that the current Republican Party stands for. Boehner’s concerns on the debt ceiling are well founded. Republicans are the doing all of the talking about getting something out of increasing the debt limit, but the Senate Democrats are likely to act very quickly if House Republicans divide along their usual battle lines.
The scenario would unfold like this. As we get closer to the deadline for the debt limit, House Republicans can’t agree to pass a hike in the debt ceiling. Senate Democrats step in and pass a raise in the debt limit that includes an extension of unemployment benefits. House Republicans keep bickering until they put the world on the verge of another economic crisis. At the last possible moment before disaster, Republicans cave and pass the Senate bill with the unemployment extension.
Boehner was using common sense. Republicans would not only lose a fight on the debt ceiling. They would lose big. It makes sense to not pick a fight that they can’t win, but one of the defining characteristics of House Republicans is a complete lack of common sense.
Speaker Boehner’s comments are proof that House Republicans view helping those who need it most as a bad thing. Many congressional Republicans are living in a very warped world where helping those in need is a bad thing that is to be avoided at all costs.
In short, Boehner was telling the Republicans to surrender on the debt ceiling because if they don’t, Americans who are struggling to eat and keep a roof over their heads might get some help.
That, in a nutshell, is Koch-funded Republican thinking at its very worst.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association