Boehner’s idea of leadership.
Los Angeles Times: House Speaker John A. Boehner called last fall’sgovernment shutdown a “very predictable disaster” that he warned his fellow Republicans to avoid, but ultimately went along with it at the behest of colleagues intent on a standoff with President Obama over his healthcare law.
Making his “Tonight Show” debut Thursday, the Ohio Republican told host Jay Leno that the episode reflected the challenges he faces leading an often rambunctious House majority.
“When I looked up, I saw my colleagues going this way. And you learn that a leader without followers is simply a man taking a walk,” he said. “So I said, ‘You want to fight this fight? I’ll go fight the fight with you.’ But it was a very predictable disaster.”
Leading by following. It’s the Boehner way.
After telling this little story, The Orange Weeper explained his job as Speaker, as he saw it: “Some members, I have to be the big brother figure. Some, I have to be the father figure. Others, I have to be the dean of students or the principal. Some of them, I have to be the Gestapo.”
And sometimes he has to be the irresponsible babysitter who lets the kids eat all the candy they want, so he doesn’t have to listen to them cry about it. And if the kids are up all night puking afterward? Not his fault.
Boehner Demands That Someone Else Shoot a Hostage for Him
John Boehner will never be described as a Profile in Courage.
Yesterday, Boehner issued a statement following a senate cloture vote to advance an extension of unemployment benefits. “One month ago I personally told the White House that another extension of temporary emergency unemployment benefits should not only be paid for but include something to help put people back to work,” a written statement reads. “To date, the president has offered no such plan. If he does, I’ll be happy to discuss it, but right now the House is going to remain focused on growing the economy and giving America’s unemployed the independence that only comes from finding a good job.”
So basically, Boehner says he wants another hostage shot before he’ll release this particular hostage. “There’s quite a bit wrong with this,” says Steve Benen. “For example, Boehner knows jobless Americans need these benefits and knows cutting off aid will hurt the economy, but insists on spending cuts to offset the costs. Why? He didn’t say. What needs to get cut? He didn’t say. Why have Republicans supported previous extensions without offsetting cuts, only to change course now? He didn’t say.”
He wants something cut. He knows there are no popular cuts to make. So he demands that someone else do the dirty work. Choose what gets cut for him or the long term unemployed get it. He wants an unpopular slashing of something or other — simply for the sake of appearances — and he wants to be able to walk away with the appearance of clean hands. He wants the extension paid for, but he wants someone else (preferably the White House) to take the blame for that offset.
As I said, no Profile in Courage here.
It’d be a lot easier to take Boehner seriously if he could actually articulate what it is exactly that he wants, but I doubt even he knows. This is more a case of opportunism than anything. The Speaker thinks he can maybe, possibly squeeze a little something-something out of this situation; even if he isn’t extremely clear on what that something might be.
“The larger takeaway from the statement is that the Speaker of the House sees the Senate moving on unemployment benefits and wants to make it perfectly clear that he has certain expectations,” Benen explains. “While some see this as an emergency for struggling families and a key economic issue, Boehner senses an opportunity — the plight of jobless Americans can be exploited to advance Republican priorities.” Which priorities? Well, we’ll leave that up to the President to decide.
Add “leadership” to the list of those admirable qualities John of Orange most sorely lacks.
The question here is whether Boehner is bluffing. I haven’t seen a whip count yet, but it’s entirely plausible that an extension could pass the House on mainly Democratic votes. All Weepy John needs to do is bring it up for a vote. So the thing that would prevent this very popular extension from happening is good old fashioned Republican obstructionism — in an election year.
Boehner might possibly be able to walk away from his unspecified offset with clean hands, but not so with shooting the hostage if he doesn’t get his way. If the extension dies in the House, everyone will know why. And everyone will know whodunit.
It’s hard to see how he can shoot the hostage, when he so clearly wants someone else to take the blame for everything. It would be a bit of a suicide mission and, as I’ve already pointed out, John Boehner doesn’t have the courage for that sort of thing.
[photo by Gage Skidmore]
Some of our members just aren’t as sensitive as they ought to be
John Boehner, on a new Republican effort to win over women voters by avoiding saying things that are anti-woman and Todd-Akiny on the campaign trail.
Meanwhile, Republicans in Michigan are contemplating making women buy “rape insurance" as a way to make insurance coverage of abortion illegal in all cases except rape and incest.
It’s not what you say John, it’s what you guys do that’s the problem. And until you get that problem squared away, you’re not going to make a lot of progress.
As long as the party continues to wage a War on Women, women are going to see the GOP as an adversary. I’m not really sure what it is about this very obvious fact that makes it hard for Republicans to understand.
Boehner’s argument against ENDA based primarily on bullshit and bad logic.
Huffington Post: House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) affirmed on Monday morning that he would oppose a law that would prohibit discrimination against gay and lesbian employees in the workplace, citing the possibility that it would put a financial burden on businesses.
"The Speaker believes this legislation will increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs, especially small business jobs," Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said in a statement.
The remark from Steel is a tough blow for supporters of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
ENDA would probably make it through the Senate, but Boehner’s opposition means it will probably not even come up for a vote in that chamber.
But consider the reasoning; does Boehner’s office believe that suits against businesses that practice gender, race, or religious discrimination are auomatically “frivolous”? I think there are quite a few people in America who would argue the opposite — and they’d be right. If there’s a law against discrimination, suing those who discriminate is pretty much the exact opposite of frivolous. And ask the person who was denied employment because of discrimination how well Boehner’s protecting jobs. The argument makes no sense at all.
When that argument fell apart, Boehner’s office “clarified” (i.e., made an entirely different and totally unrelated argument); “We have always believed this is covered by existing law.” Of course, it’s not. That’s why ENDA is needed. But even if Boehner was right, it would completely contradict his original argument — where are all the frivolous lawsuits destroying American businesses far and wide?
The truth is that Boehner’s arguing in bad faith. What going on — and what he’s bending over backwards to avoid saying — is that gerrymandering of House districts has made his party slaves to bigots. And as a result, Boehner’s nutjob caucus needs to take the least popular position on an issue once again, lest the hatemongering voters that the party has chosen for themselves will primary them with someone who hates the gays enough.
An alternate headline for this piece — indeed, the headline I’d originally considered — would be “How the GOP is committing suicide today.” Again, they can’t keep thwarting the will of the people and expect to win elections.
We fought the good fight, we just didn’t win.