Wow, once again I’m forced to support Speaker Boehner (R-OH-08). I guess I’m ready for my RINO card.
There’s this from Dr. Krauthammer:
Consider the Boehner Plan for debt reduction. The Heritage Foundation’s advocacy arm calls it “regrettably insufficient.” Of course it is. That’s what happens when you control only half a branch. But the plan’s achievements are significant. It is all cuts, no taxes. It establishes the precedent that debt-ceiling increases must be accompanied by equal spending cuts. And it provides half a year to both negotiate more fundamental reform (tax and entitlement) and keep the issue of debt reduction constantly in the public eye.
I am somewhat biased about the Boehner Plan because for weeks I’ve been arguing (in this column and elsewhere) for precisely such a solution: a two-stage debt-ceiling hike consisting of a half-year extension with dollar-for-dollar spending cuts, followed by intensive negotiations on entitlement and tax reform. It’s clean. It’s understandable. It’s veto-proof. (Obama won’t dare.) The Republican House should have passed it weeks ago.
The House Republicans are facing off against a Democratic Senate and the most left wing president in American history on a daily basis. They are not only fighting them at a huge disadvantage and with a media that has an evident bias, but they are actually winning by any standard. Are they perfect or have they accomplished everything I want them too? Of course not. However, they have accomplished a lot and for that they deserve praise and not scorn. Republicans like Paul Ryan have taken great political risks in order to do what is right and put the country first and it’s time we start rewarding them for it. The grass roots movements are vital to defining and expanding conservatism, but the Republicans that are now in control in Washington (at least in the house) are our friends and not our enemies. That is not to diminish the people who are opposing the current plan, who are also doing vital work, but I for one salute Speaker Boehner, Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Allen West and others for fighting for our country’s future. They truly are heroes of the conservative movement.
But my reasoning is even simpler. Look, you can argue that the Speaker should’ve never introduced a new bill and stuck with Cut, Cap & Balance. I might even agree with you. There’s no doubt it’s a better bill than the current one. By orders of magnitude.
But that’s not what happened. We’re not a place where we can say “it’s no bill or this bill”. It’s “this bill or a far worse one”. Those are our two choices.
Now that the new bill has been introduced, and is up for a vote, the Speaker needs our support. If he loses on this one, the Tea Party wing of the party will have cut him off at the knees. He becomes a mute voice at the negotiation table. He’s done incredibly well at negotiation so far. Until today I would’ve said it’s a guarantee that we’re going to get a small debt ceiling increase (which is what we need) with no tax increases, and a decent amount of cuts to baseline funding. Those are HUGE wins. And they’re good PR wins as well. It’s definitely not what the President has wanted.
Now, I’m not so sure. No matter what we end up with, it’s almost certainly going to be to the left of Boehner’s bill, because that bill is going nowhere in the Senate. But if it fails, the debate moves even farther to the left. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and President Barack Obama (D-USA) will know that Boehner has lost support of the Tea Party wing of the party. Thus any bill that passes in the House is going to need significant Democrat support. That means the bill moves even further to the left.
I fail to see how that’s a good thing. In my opinion, Congressmen voting no on the Speaker’s bill are snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
That’s my opinion. If you don’t share it, that’s fine. I understand wanting to stick to principles. Normally I’m right there with you. Read back in this blog, if you think I’m lying. I respect your opinion if you disagree. Please respect mine as well.