Representative John Boehner (R-Ohio), Speaker of the House of Representatives, does not like conservatives any more, if he ever did. “Ridiculous!” he cries. Meaning, people should laugh at conservatives. But conservatives have something to tell the Speaker: we are not laughing. Because this is not a laughing matter.
What did the Speaker say?
At issue is the two-year budget deal that Representative Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) worked out with Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) For once the country will have a budget, not a “continuing resolution.” It will last for the rest of the 113th Congress. No government shutdown, no more debt ceiling talks. And no repeat of veterans locked out of monuments or school kids locked out of museums.
The bill will not extend unemployment benefits further. But it will more than double a tax on airline tickets to fund the Transportation Security Administration (“Thousands Standing Around”). It lifts all the caps Congress agreed to in 2011. The deficit, and the debt, will both rise.
And in reply, the Speaker denounced them.
They’re using our members, and they’re using the American people for their own goals. This is ridiculous.
Boehner said that yesterday. This afternoon he wasn’t through:
I think they’re pushing our members in places where they don’t want to be, and frankly, I just think that they’ve lost all credibility.
What is credibility? It means whether you can believe what someone says.
Can we believe what the Speaker says, in this or any other context? Let us see.
Mr. Speaker, why should we believe you?
Speaker Boehner also said,
I came here to downsize government. This bill does that.
How? What programs did it cut. None, so far as anyone knows. Instead the government will spend $63 billion more over the next two years and maybe cut that back over the next eight.
Apparently, there are some Republicans who don’t have the stomach for even relatively small spending reductions that are devoid of budgetary smoke and mirrors. If Republicans work with Democrats to pass this deal, it should surprise no one when Republican voters seek alternatives who actually believe in less spending when they go to the ballot box.
At time of posting, the House did pass the deal. From The Washington Post:
The House approved the budget 332 to 94, with 169 Republicans and 163 Democrats voting in favor, and 62 Republicans and 32 Democrats voting against.
Chris Chocola was right. Now he didn’t say where Republican voters should “seek alternatives” next year. He might be thinking, “in the primaries.”
RoseAnn Salanitri of the New Jersey Tea Party Caucus has a better idea: another party. As to the Speaker, today she riposted:
If the Tea Party had their way, John Boehner wouldn’t be Speaker.
That could mean either to change party majorities, or to push the House Republican Caucus to throw seniority aside and choose another Speaker.
One thing that would be worth a laugh, if anyone should laugh at a country about to collapse, is what the hard Hollywood left thinks of the Speaker. In this year’s White House Down, a black President proposes to withdraw all troops from the Middle East. In reply, an insanely ambitious Speaker of the House lays on a false-flag pseudo-op to kill the President and the Vice-President. That way, he can take over as Acting President. (The Presidential Succession Act of 1947, as amended, would let him do this.)
Lay aside that Barack Obama might be dewy-eyed but he’s not that dewy-eyed. Here’s the point: the Republicans have a Speaker who lacks even the ambition that Tip O’Neil had. That any fevered Hollywood producer would actually accuse him of having enough ambition to seek to assassinate the President and Vice-President would be enough to make one laugh fit to choke.
Would be, except, as I repeat, this is not a laughing matter. America will go up in smoke and flame and tear gas if this is the kind of deal we’re going to get. Heritage, AfP, Freedom Works, the Club for Growth, and the Tea Party understand this. Speaker John Boehner doesn’t understand that, or doesn’t want to understand it.
By the seniority rule, John Boehner will probably go on being Speaker. That is, until the House Republican Caucus get wise to themselves (see above), or American conservative voters find another conservative voice. And in the process give the Republican Party another apt historical name: Whig.
To see the Washington Times coverage of Tea Party opponents of the deal, click here.
Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.
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