I don’t mean to be impertinent. But I have a solution to the mess with the debt ceiling, budget-cutting and revenue enhancements. Really.
Here it is. Speaker Boehner should count the noses in his House GOP caucus of those whose votes he can count on to get a bare majority. Then he should go to the White House to meet with Pres. Obama. The two of them then put together a package of a two-year debt ceiling increase, budget cuts and revenue enhancements – tax code rewriting issues- as close to what can get the minimum required number of House Republican votes for passage.
Boehner then should convene his caucus and say the following: “My name is John Boehner. For information of new members, I’m Speaker of the House of Representatives. I have here a bill to raise the debt ceiling and address other immediate national budget concerns. This caucus meeting will last two more minutes. Upon leaving this room, the full House will be called into session in 10 minutes. This bill will be placed for an immediate vote. It will pass.
“Upon the final vote, names of those voting “no” will be put on a list. My staff will begin searching bills already assigned to committees and any such legislation on which one of those names appears will be returned to my desk. From this time forward and until further notice, all proposed bills will come to my desk before committee assignment.
“Any proposed legislation now in process which contains the names of any who vote “no” this morning will be placed in a box beside my desk and will remain there. Any future proposed bills bearing any of those names will be added to the contents of that box. They will remain there.
This meeting is adjourned and I will see you on the floor in 10 minutes. Thank you for your attention.”
In political parlance, that scenario is called “hardball.” It’s politics at its toughest. And it’s high time the group of 80-90 newly elected who seem hellbent in taking this nation off a cliff should be introduced to the tactic. The dangers posed by their ignorance of governing require nothing less.
CAMPAIGN: Run or stand for office; a series of actions tending toward a particular end; a race between candidates for elective office.”
GOVERNING: Direct or strongly influence behavior; impose regulation as of nations; govern.”
The Teapublicans – or whatever they call themselves – obviously got into office by mastering the campaign part. But, though elected, they have displayed repeatedly they have no understanding of the craft of governing. It’s time for those who do, like Speaker Boehner, to conduct a hardball civics lesson using the current difficult topics as his teaching tools.
Boehner is no fool. He’s gone far beyond normal efforts to appease as many caucus members as possible without wielding the great power of his office. He’s done so for one basic reason: he wants to keep that powerful office and all the perks that go with it. But if he doesn’t take a stand now, he could very easily be dethroned. If not this time, then the next. Or the next. Eric Cantor is standing right behind him doing an excellent impersonation of Brutus. Right down to the phony smile.
Given the ego of anyone who wants the job of Speaker, I can’t believe Boehner wants to go into the history books as one of those who could have made a difference when this nation became the largest debtor in history but, instead, was one of those who chose to try to save his own career.
The time has come to kick some ass!