President Obama’s December Cuba surprise has sent both John Boehner and Mitch McConnell reeling as the president has again demonstrated his tactical superiority over the Republican congressional leadership.
Speaker of the House John Boehner reached deep into the empty bag of Republican talking points and pulled out the old Obama is caving to dictators line.
Boehner said, “Relations with the Castro regime should not be revisited, let alone normalized, until the Cuban people enjoy freedom – and not one second sooner. There is no ‘new course’ here, only another in a long line of mindless concessions to a dictatorship that brutalizes its people and schemes with our enemies. If anything, this emboldens all state sponsors of terrorism, as they now have an even better idea of what the president meant when he once told Russian leaders he would have ‘more flexibility’ after his re-election. We have seen this before, and I fear we will see it again. Despite these reservations about the president’s changes in our policy toward this communist regime, we all feel great joy and relief for Alan Gross and his family. Americans do not forget our own, and we speak out today because we have a moral responsibility not to forget anyone anywhere who longs for liberty and dignity.”
Soon to be Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had even less to say. McConnell would only say that agreed with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), “Sounds like the correct response to me. I think he knows more about this than almost anybody in the Senate if not everybody in the Senate and I wouldn’t differ with his characterization.”
Rubio’s response consisted of a temper tantrum where the Florida Republican compared Obama to Jimmy Carter.
After causing chaos within the Republican Party with his immigration executive actions, President Obama has exposed more fractures and divides with his announcement of a change in policy towards Cuba. The end result has been Boehner disagreeing with Chamber of Commerce, House Republicans disagreeing with each other, and Mitch McConnell looking like a stooge by offering up a variation of yeah, what he said as a response.
Republican control of Congress has unleashed President Obama, and if the last two months are any indication, Boehner and McConnell are in for a very difficult two years.
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