John Boehner resigns, and that is not good news

AP_john_boehner_jef_130913_16x9_608-1

Speaker of the House John Boehner is quitting, not just as speaker but as a member of Congress, and I don’t blame him for a minute. It’s a marvel that he lasted this long.

For more than four years now he has attempted to reconcile the unrealistic, unrelenting demands of the Republican base against the responsibility of actually governing this nation and trying to keep the system at least marginally functional. For four years he has attempted to protect his party from its worst instincts, and what has he gotten in return?

Accusations of betrayal and spineless leadership. Constant demands for his overthrow. Attacks on his conservative credentials, although to anybody outside the conservative movement he sure looked plenty conservative. And all this, from his supposed friends and supporters, those on his side of the aisle. It had to wear on him, and at times you could see plainly that it did.

“I didn’t need to be speaker because I needed a fancy title or a big office,” he once said. “I wanted to be speaker so I could lead an effort to deal with the serious issues that are facing our country.” The truth is that he never got that chance, again because of his own unruly majority, and instead becomes yet another GOP scalp taken by the GOP itself, another victim of its ongoing purge in pursuit of ideological purity.

Already the celebrations have begun, again from those with whom Boehner shared an ideology and a party. “(President Obama) has run circles around us since John Boehner was speaker of the House,” Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-Kan.), told the Washington Post after the news broke. “I think it’s a victory for the American people.”

What now? Nobody really knows. But as Huelskamp demonstrates, there’s a powerful strain within the Republican Party that believes that it is one major, titanic confrontation away from remaking the country in its own radical vision, a confrontation that Boehner had fought hard to avoid because he believed it would be disastrous for his party and his country. He understood what too many in his party did not, that the fervent ardency of their belief was no substitute for broad public support. As he liked to remind people, he grew up in a barroom. He had probably witnessed firsthand what happens when false courage drives you to pick a fight that you won’t win.

So this is not just Boehner’s resignation as speaker: I suspect it is also Boehner’s resignation to the fact that the confrontation is going to come and he is no longer willing or able to stand in its way.

Reader Comments 0

486 comments
YouLibs
YouLibs

I've honestly just returned from a retreat in a tent on a beach on the Gulf of Mexico and this is the first thing I looked at on the internet.


Wow.


Did the Pope do it?


As Visual_ Cortex says, off to RTFA.

YouLibs
YouLibs

I think the Pope did it.


This Pope has profound spiritual gravitas, he is so obviously moved by the spirit of Jesus. When one is in the presence of someone who is highly evolved in that sense, one can be inspired to the point of changing the direction of one's life.


I think that very well may be what happened to John Boehner while I was away.


Damon Hynes
Damon Hynes

Jay, thanks for protecting constitutionalists and capital-C-Conservatives from themselves.  </sarcasm> I've seen your kind of B'rer Rabbiting before.

lvg
lvg

From CNN:


Rep. Peter "King said Boehner's departure was essentially "throwing raw meat" to "small but loud faction" of the GOP and was bad news for the party.

"It signals that crazies have taken over the party," King told CNN. "This has never happened before in our country. Where a person doing a job, the Speaker of the house, was removed from office, by a small faction because they want these unreasonable demands that if you don't agree with them you shut the government down. This is insanity."""""


King is a Republican

JoelEdge
JoelEdge

You've lost one of your own. Condolences, Bookman.

Michael B
Michael B

Job opening - Washington, DC area - cat herding, this interesting opportunity involves organizing a group of red cats in various competitions against a smaller group of blue cats. This work is challenging, as cats do not respond well to organizational principles.

WARNING - some of these red cats are feral, that is they were born in the wild and have had little or no contact with humans. Therefore they lack socialization skills.

lvg
lvg

The lunatics and mysoginists now have the keys to the asylum. Boehner resigned because he knew Planned  Parenthood serves a statutory purpose and neither the fundamentalists in the GOP or the Pope would  change his mind. Besides  ending funding for Planned Parenthood and overturning Roe v. Wade , maybe the right wing  lunatics will pass a scarlet letter statute like Rubio and Jeb passed in Florida making women publish names of sexual partners before an adoption can proceed.

Bob Emerson
Bob Emerson

Lunatics and mysoginists? You are a champion name caller! I am always amazed how quickly small minds on both the left and right resort to name calling when their intellect fails them. When small minded people substitute name calling for intelligence, they leave no room for doubt as to their limited intellectual capacity...

lvg
lvg

@Bob Emerson Does that include Boehner calling Cruz a jacka-s earlier this momth?

Bob Emerson
Bob Emerson



Yes. Name calling is the last refuge of intellectually challenged individuals, regardless of politics...

Corey
Corey

“Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they're sure trying to do so, it's going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and

governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can't and won't compromise. I know, I've tried to deal with them.”
― Barry M. Goldwater

GarySCox1
GarySCox1

This is truly a sad state of affairs ... he has tried for 4 years to herd the Tea Party cats ... the only salvation for the GOP will be to tell the Tea Baggers to go form a third party ... !

DS
DS

"...there’s a powerful strain within the Republican Party that believes that it is one major, titanic confrontation away from remaking the country in its own radical vision..."

I doubt House Republicans really believe that might happen.

However, they do know that, in order to be reelected in their highly partisan gerrymandered districts, they have to steer hard right. They don't want to get outflanked by an even crazier extremist in the primary (just ask Eric Cantor).

King_of_Kolob
King_of_Kolob

The cost to tax payer for funding PP?

The cost to tax payers to shut down the Govt.?

Which would cost less?

I know. it's not the cost. It's the babies. We want them on death row instead.

alexander2
alexander2

Govt requires at least 2 viable parties (opinions) and leaders with enough charisma to see an opinion through. Obama has overwhelmed the GOP opinion at every turn and thus for a large part of the population-has rendered their opinion mote.This causes anger and resentment in the long run as these emotions boil to the surface. GOP needs a new leader with good ideas and leadership abilities..Then real dialogue will occur and consensus..Obama needs a foil..he can handle it...

KUTGF
KUTGF

Off topic: Kim Davis, a county clerk in Kentucky who was briefly jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples said on Friday that she and her family have switched to the Republican Party because the Democrats no longer represented them.

________

Well that certainly ruins a RWer talking point. 

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@KUTGF

So I see Kentucky has a closed primary system. Did anyone bother to check to see when the last time was that she actually voted in a primary? Or would that be too much like work?

KUTGF
KUTGF

@Visual_Cortex Ya mean since 1999?  ;)


I imagine some reporter may dig a little now

alexander2
alexander2

@KUTGF He and Pelosi are out partying.....gotta have fun with plastic surgery....

JKLtwo
JKLtwo

@KUTGF If you want to have some fun, check out who the Demwits are running for President.  A liar, a clown, and a socialist.  You could come up with better candidates throwing darts blinfolded at Walmart.

dreema
dreema

@JKLtwo @KUTGF ooooh, name calling. That's a thoughtful and well reasoned response.

breckenridge
breckenridge

I'd like to see Louie "terror babies" Goehmert (R-Texas)  toss his hat in the ring for majority leader again.

Mr. Terror Babies is stark raving mad, and he'd provide quality entertainment on a regular basis.

DMayr
DMayr

@breckenridge If that happened, I'd buy stock in popcorn and lounge chairs :-)

LeninTime
LeninTime

Hope you're around later josef. Lots going on in Syria/Turkey.

consumedconsumer
consumedconsumer

and now the fiscally conservative voters who elected JB to office a lil' while ago get to spend more money holding a special election to replace him because the nation's 'real republicans' didn't think he was conservative enough. Fiscal responsibility in action i guess.

straker
straker

gotalife - "the list of benefits of white privilege"


Here's a tip"


This is 2015, not 1950.


Lee30519
Lee30519

@straker He has no clue.  Instead of earning his own way he would rather say while people are privileged.  Last time I checked they have many more entitlements.  I wonder why?

josef
josef

LENIN

Whoo, wee!Following things over in H3ll?Obama, Putin, Erdogan, Bibi, and Assad all on the same page and coordinating “efforts.”This oughta be fun! Of course, if you've been following the diplomats...LOL

JeffreyEav
JeffreyEav

It appears Mr Boehner's own party gerrymandered him out of office. Priceless.

fiftythreepercenter
fiftythreepercenter

Thank you for your service Boehner. Best of luck to you in your retirement.

Now, let's get the work of the people done (the ones who gave you control of congress)!!

consumedconsumer
consumedconsumer

@fiftythreepercenter dude, you're the one who wants congress to do the work of the people who put them there. corporate interests did, or didn't you get the fundraising memo Mr. Job Creator? Guess you're not big enough for the big boys to bother with . . .