By: Billy House and Erik Wassen, Bloomberg Politics
September 17, 2015
On Oct. 1, when the 2016 fiscal year starts, the U.S. government will shut down, unless Congress and the White House can agree on a bill that would keep money moving from the Department of the Treasury to the federal agencies and programs it funds. The legislative crisis is a near repeat of the dispute that triggered a 16-day shutdown in October 2013. More than 40 conservative Republicans have announced they won’t vote for any appropriations that include federal funding for the women’s health group Planned Parenthood, which is being targeted by anti-abortion activists. Senate Democrats have vowed to block legislation that cuts the funding, while the president has said he’d veto every Republican bill proposed so far. That leaves Speaker John Boehner with only one way to avoid a shutdown: ask his Democratic counterpart, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, for help.
Republicans won 247 seats in the House in 2014, more than any year since 1928, and retook control of the Senate for the first time since 2006. The party’s landslide midterm victory hasn’t been enough to give its conservative wing the freedom it craves to rewrite major government programs. Boehner finds himself right where he was in 2013, when he depended on Pelosi to deliver the Democratic votes he needed to reopen the government over the objections of hard-line Republicans who wanted to deny funding for the Affordable Care Act and limit federal borrowing.
The two don’t socialize, but Pelosi has publicly described herself as having a “good rapport” with Boehner, who replaced her as speaker in 2011 after Republicans won the House from Democrats. In April, Boehner was photographed smooching Pelosi in the Rose Garden of the White House at a ceremony celebrating the signing of a landmark Medicare reform package that resolved disputes over doctor reimbursement formulas dating from the Clinton administration. Pelosi and Boehner were the main architects of that deal. They drew effusive praise from Obama, who thanked everyone in attendance, including Boehner, for “a gorgeous piece of legislation.”
RINOTRACKER RESPONSE FROM SHELLY J. FALCIGNO:
When Congressman Mark Meadows of North Carolina filed a motion to unseat House Speaker John Boehner, he did so to the delight of the conservative grassroots. Growing contempt and mistrust of career politicians is getting hard for RINOs like Boehner to ignore. In fact, the overwhelming support of presidential nominee Donald Trump has forced the GOP establishment to face a future in which they are either no longer employed or have lost the ability to favor big corporations and special interest groups. To say they don’t like that prospect is an understatement.
To stay in power, and on the take, career politicians routinely double cross the very people who vote for them. They’ve been successful and their actions have gone unnoticed for who knows how long. Their success has come in part due to sneaky procedural moves. Unfortunately, the average voter doesn’t stay up on politics, let alone know the difference between really trying to move legislation and show voting, a procedural move meant to look like real effort but is ultimately meant to fail. That’s OK. They have enough common sense to know that if their party controls both the House and Senate, there is no excuse for failure. They demand answers!
Now that the public has been made aware of the treachery going on right beneath their noses, in part due to tell all book by Texas Senator Ted Cruz “A Time for Truth,” along with the growing use of social media, the jig is up. Removal of RINOs is not only being called for but demanded. “Republican In Name Only” seat holders are hustling for a strategy to save themselves. So, given the history of depending on the left, it is no surprise that Boehner will have to ask for their help in saving his job. Will they? Probably. It’s not in their best interest to do otherwise.
Where does that leave the base? Even madder than before, is my expectation. No longer manipulated by guilt and PC name calling, they’ve risen and unified. Not under one candidate at this point, but in spirit and mutual frustration. Frustration with the Obama Administration and their own party promises to make next year’s election unlike any other, save Ronald Reagan. Going forward, I expect momentum to build and reverse America’s disastrous current course. In short, even if Boehner and the like save themselves today, it’s ultimately futile. Voters demand loyalty, and will not rest until they get the representation they are promised and they expect when they cast their ballots.