Friday, April 15, 2011

Trouble at the Top?

It turns out last Friday's budget deal was a fraud.  Even the editors of National Review felt compelled to take back their initial support for it.  When it was finally voted on, a fourth of the House GOP caucus, either sensing, knowing, or learning that it was a bad deal, voted against it. What does this say about Speaker Boehner, about all the Republican congressional leaders?

Something, but not everything.  As The American Spectator's Quin Hillyer reminds us, Obama and the Democrats are the real enemy, not John Boehner.

The other day my post was titled "Good Cop, Bad Cop".  My intention was to suggest that there might be something useful for Boehner and the rest of the GOP leadership about having the Tea Party Republicans looking over their collective shoulders.  That is, they could use that adamantine presence (we pray) as leverage when bargaining with Obama and the Democrats over spending, over taxes, over everything.  I was wrong.  I was wrong to even try to start thinking tactically like some DC insider.

First, I'm not smart enough to play those kinds of games.  But, second, I am smart enough to know that the days of thinking of our national politics as some kind of game are over.  The stakes are simply too high.

John Boehner strikes me as a good guy, maybe even the right guy.  He's been in Washington long enough to have absorbed its corrupt culture inspite of himself.  But, I think, I hope, he can learn.  That fifty-nine of his fellow Republican House members voted against the deal he struggled to broker was an embarrassing lesson for him.  Let's see if he can remember the key points.        

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