Paul Ryan to House GOP: Really? Do I look that crazy to you?

paul-ryan-not-impressed-ap-1

Never fear, Republicans. Newt Gingrich is ready to step into the office from which he was chased, if not chaste.

“If you were to say to me, 218 guys have called you up and given you their pledge, obviously no citizen could turn down that challenge,” Newt told the Washington Times.

So there’s that option.

Personally, though, Paul Ryan appears to be by far the better choice. The Wisconsin Republican and former vice-presidential nominee has repeatedly begged off pleas to become speaker, citing his responsibility as the father to young children. If that’s truly his reason, then it should be respected, but I have a feeling that Ryan understands the historical moment. If asked to preside as a weak speaker over the sort of chaos to which the GOP appears committed, he will continue to turn it down. He sees what’s down that road — extended government shutdowns, possible default on our debt, etc. — and wants no responsibility for what he would lack the power to stop.

However, if actually given the chance to lead his party and country out of this increasingly dire predicament, he might take it.

What would that second option require? It would require confronting and if necessary breaking the power of the so-called Freedom Caucus, which might more aptly be called the Hell No Caucus. That group of 40 or so House Republicans are the vestal virgins of the modern GOP, a collection of souls so allegedly pure and uncompromising in their conservatism that they are given leverage far in excess to their number. What they want, party leaders increasingly feel obliged to give them, and any who dare to challenge them become targets of the conservative media that serve as their enforcers. The majority of House Republicans were happy with John Boehner as speaker, but the vestal virgins wanted him gone, so he is going. The majority would also have been content with Kevin McCarthy, but the virgins have now vetoed him too.

The dynamic is all but inevitable: When you create a party that celebrates extremism and abhors moderation, you give the extremists the power to define you. You also create a party that cannot be led, and Ryan understands that.

At the moment, in these desperate circumstances, Ryan may have the standing to demand and receive loyalty pledges from all 247 members of the House GOP, including from the Freedom Caucus members. “We need somebody to get us 247,” as McCarthy put it in abandoning his own bid. “And I was never going to be able to get 247.”

But over the longer term — which these days is three or four months — personal pledges of loyalty will not suffice and the logic of mathematics will reassert itself.  You need 218 votes to do the people’s business in the House, and House leadership can get those 218 votes in one of two ways. They can continue to coddle and spoil the Freedom Caucus, allowing them to call the shots and acceding to their increasingly irrational demands. That doesn’t end well.

Conversely, they can ignore the Freedom Caucus and begin to turn to the Democrats for votes, seeking compromise and co-operation. The first approach preserves party unity, but at immense risk to the country and to the party’s future. The second approach breaks the power of the Freedom Caucus and its backers, but at great risk of splitting the Republican Party in two.

That’s why, if you’re Paul Ryan, you may continue to choose Option C, none of the above.

 

 

Reader Comments 0

1935 comments
St Simons he-ne-ha
St Simons he-ne-ha

Breaking - Very important news that I hope doesn't get buried in the loud con disinfotainment monkey-poo -

Dr Angus Deaton has been awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics this morning.

It's a safe choice, in light of the big one next year which will probably be T Piketty.

For those in the biz, these two are important choices putting a stamp on the Future marking the End of trickle-down in any serious discussion forever, and correctly regulating it to the fraud scam that it is. Removal from textbooks at respectable schools & universities is surely to follow.

Feel free to mercilessly ridicule any and all proponents of this failed ideology as the Fraud Scams they are.

This is a Big Day for us, a great day.

Numbers_R_Us
Numbers_R_Us

@St Simons he-ne-ha The Koch boys will continue to write their own books for use in classrooms that they have bought.  People like them never let the truth get in their way.

Dusty2
Dusty2

@St Simons he-ne-ha 


Typical liberal comment:  Let's revise the textbooks! Maybe Cuba, our new bestest friend,  will loan us some of their "textbooks" so we can be updated

Dusty2
Dusty2

@Numbers_R_Us @Dusty2 @St Simons he-ne-ha 


I was saying that liberals have no thoughts of their own, just reprints of what they were fed on the internet.


Koch brother?  Wealth envy by those who are not wealthy?  Poor babies. Keep trying and crying as that is all you have.

KUTGF
KUTGF

McConnell is appointing a few looking to change the filibuster rules.  I seem to remember a lot of RWer posters telling us how changing the rules would just be sooooo wrong. 

KUTGF
KUTGF

@DownInAlbany Oh exactly what I expected.  IOKIYAR. 


So much for principles!  LOL

DownInAlbany
DownInAlbany

@KUTGF And, it still would be wrong, but, apparently, all is fair in love, war AND politics.

Now that the shoe is on the other foot, I guess you agree?

YouLibs
YouLibs

I learn every day how classy this place is.


Not only do we have a troll here who has worked his way up the ladder of education to the lofty position of MA, we now learn that one of them owns a business.


Can anyone show me another online community anywhere whose members can boast of such special accomplishments?

fedup52
fedup52

@YouLibs Cons are good at chest thumping whether they have one or not.

KUTGF
KUTGF

@YouLibs Now now..... don't forget that TD University (a spin off of Trump U) was opened just last week and that for a small price, td will educate you.  Why with that type of education, you too can make $600,000/hr on the internets like my sister. 

TBS
TBS

Placing wagers as the one suggested on this blog is illegal

Jesus cries when people do things like that

Best not to engage in illegal activities

fedup52
fedup52

But there’s one remote scenario, people close to him say, in which Ryan would consider abandoning his long-laid career plans and go for the speakership: if he was the true consensus choice of the party. That means no opposition, no sniping, no acceding to demands in exchange for support.
+++++

Good luck with that.

Doggone_GA
Doggone_GA

@Numbers_R_Us @fedup52 They couldn't stop it.  If the R's all vote for Ryan they have all the votes they need to elect him without the Ds

Kamchak
Kamchak

I own a business and employ 2.5 million people.

fedup52
fedup52

@Kamchak And I am your major vendor.  Making millions of you.

fiftythreepercenter
fiftythreepercenter

"Any moron can run down to City Hall, get a business license, open up a dba checking account and be a "business"... Fitty tree is a prime example..."


And......... how do explain YOU?  If it's so simple, foo, how come you're still scraping the barrel for scraps instead of leading your multi million dollar dynasty?  

foo2u
foo2u

Barrel scraping can be very lucrative...

Derp...

fiftythreepercenter
fiftythreepercenter

"Go for it.  Once I have your check in hand, made out to cash, I'll send yours made out to you.  Bwah hahahahha!"


I laid out the deal below.  You in or out?

Numbers_R_Us
Numbers_R_Us

@fiftythreepercenter You didn't lay out anything but more of your childishness.  But do keep me posted on when that check is in Jay's hands along with proof of your current list of 150 non-minimum wage employees and YTD profit improvement.  I'll be waiting.  Bwah hahahahaha!

foo2u
foo2u

You forgot the IP addresses that Jay's IT folks are going to verify...

Derp...

Numbers_R_Us
Numbers_R_Us

@fiftythreepercenter @Numbers_R_Us That proves it right there.  Yep.  Bwah hahahahahaha!  Shouldn't you be tending to those 150 non-minimum wage employees or perhaps you were feeling generous and decided to give them all Columbus Day off with pay.  Bwah hahahahaha!

fiftythreepercenter
fiftythreepercenter

Looks like Numbers and Headley's tough talk is going to cost them $10K apiece.  Don't back down kiddies.  If you're so sure you're right, put up the cash.  Back up your big boy talk for a change.  

foo2u
foo2u

@fiftythreepercenter If "profits are up 35%" why all the whining and belly aching about how Obamacare is destroying your business?

Your "150" employees have insurance and your "profits are up 35%" it's called a win win...

Do you hate the fact that your "150" employees and their families are protected from medical catastrophes THAT much?

Derp...

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

Iranian TV says Post correspondent Jason Rezaian convicted

With hard-liners championed by Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, firmly in control of key levers of power, the case served to underscore the relative impotence of the Rouhani government in judicial and national security matters.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/iranian-tv-says-post-correspondent-jason-rezaian-convicted/2015/10/12/b1652690-ee9e-11e4-8abc-d6aa3bad79dd_story.html

Can someone remind me why we negotiated with the Iranian regime again? 

stefpe
stefpe

@FIGMO2 Can you remind me why we're allied with Saudi Arabia again?

foo2u
foo2u

@FIGMO2 So when we send soldiers off to die in that god-forsaken shyte hole, we can at least tell their families "we tried peace first"?

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

@stefpe

Oil, and because they've shown no interest in pursuing nuclear weapons?

TBS
TBS

Hedly

When 53 goes all internet bravado it is a sight to see

It is more like a clown show but he seems to be all bird chest proud and impressed with himself

Enjoy the laughs

I know I do

Kamchak
Kamchak

Way back when this season's NFL schedule was announced, I predicted the Atlanta/Washington would go to overtime. Furthermore, I want to pat myself on the back for correctly predicting that Robert Alford would intercept a Cousin's pass and run it all the way back for a game winning touchdown.

Kudos to me.

TBS
TBS

That's like some of the predictions thiat are conveyed on this blog