The Boehner of Our Existence
Speaker of the House, John Boehner
I think we all—Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Indifferents—have to agree that it really sucks to be John Boehner. Ever since January, 2011 when he took that obscene oversized gavel out of Nancy Pelosi’s hands his life has been a living hell that not even golf with The Donald, a nice bottle of Chateau Ausone at the Capitol Grille and a home tanning bed can mitigate.
That has a lot to do with how Boehner got his gavel. The Speaker surfed in on the 2010 TEA Party wave and who could have known that those aging Boomers who liked to dress up and wave poorly spelled, but highly creative, signs were only the advance guard of a younger, hungrier army of outsider anarchist idealogues appalled at where the “country was heading”—code for socialist, Kenyan usurper-apologist in their White House.
Thus was the Koch Caucus born and their well-endowed velvet revolution to overthrow the government from within. And John Boehner gets to be their stooge, humiliated time and again by his ungovernable cohorts who wear their ignorance of the framework, the workings and conventions of good government like some sick badge of courage. Boehner gets to read headlines about himself like:
And those are the kinder, gentler headlines. Then there are these:
You get the idea . . .
On top of all that, Boehner must keep a stiff-upper-something, pretending to be smart and masterful whilst being clobbered from all sides. I’m not sure, if I were a member of Team Boehner [that means you, Michael Steel] that I would trot out something like this little gem for damage control:
Somebody on Team Boehner needs to learn the strategic beauty of striking without completely baring the ass. The reason that President Obama will negotiate with Vladimir Putin and not with the Koch Caucus is pretty obvious: Putin, it pains me to say, is generally adult, when he needs to be and appears to be relatively sane. He also seems to understand how diplomacy and negotiation work i.e., each side has something that the other needs/wants.
On the other hand, if some Republicans had a hard time understanding Obama’s willingness to negotiate with Putin it’s probably because a) they don’t respect Putin, just on principle, as an equal partner and b) they don’t understand, for a minute, anything other than their winner-take-all, scorched earth brand of “negotiation.”
That is exactly the reason that Obama refuses to negotiate with the House GOP. They don’t respect their own leaders or constituents, let alone the leader of the opposition party. Why bother?
The White House can’t simply negotiate with sane Republican leaders because the rank-and-file members don’t recognize their authority not to mention the fact that their demands are absurd and impossible to achieve from the get-go.
So. Speaker Boehner is left with two options: take the blame for this train wreck, himself, or find a way to project it on Obama, as if this is the real world and Obama is being unreasonable.
Meanwhile, the House GOP’s failure of logic has now painted them into a corner where they will almost inevitably be working hard, with no recess, against their own interests, i.e., they’ll have to vote for shutdown or to approve the Senate’s bill. If the Senate’s measure is, overall, more generous to Democrats than Boehner’s original proposal [as it almost certainly is] that’s what House Republicans will be stuck with, in the end. Explain that to the wackaloons back home.
As if all of that isn’t enough, Speaker Boehner just found out that he has a primary challenge for his seat in 2014. Live by the teabag, die by the teabag.
Sucks. To. Be. Boehner.