Boehner resignation cuts US government shutdown risk

27 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Amid Departure, John Boehner Promises To Avoid Government Shutdown.

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker John Boehner warned Sunday against “false prophets” in his own party making unrealistic promises, saying his resignation had averted a government shutdown this week but not the GOP’s broader battle over how to wield power. Speaking on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Boehner unloaded against conservatives long outraged that even with control of both houses of Congress, Republicans have not succeeded on key agenda items, such as repealing President Barack Obama’s health care law and striking taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood.

Boehner, R-Ohio, announced Friday that he will step down from the speakership and leave the House at the end of October, largely because he wanted to spare his colleagues having to vote on a resolution offered by conservatives to kick him out of the chair. “The Bible says beware of false prophets. There are people out there spreading noise about how much can get done,” Boehner said. “I mean, this whole idea that we are going to shut down the government to get rid of Obamacare in 2013 – this plan never had a chance.” Boehner warned, “We’ve got groups here in town, members of the House and Senate here in town, who whip people into a frenzy believing that they can accomplish things that they know — they know! — are never gonna happen.” He defended his record, saying he achieved “the largest deficit reduction deal in the history of the country” and the first major entitlement reforms in two decades — “all done over the last 4 1/2 years with a Democrat president and all voted against by my most conservative members because it wasn’t good enough.

Besides having the Pope bless his six-week-old grandson, Boehner said Pope Francis also asked Boehner to pray for him. ‘Well, you can imagine, I was a mess,’ the House Speaker, known as an intense cryer, said. ‘Well I thought – I think it helped clear the picture,’ he said. ‘I never related one of these instances with the other, but clearly, by Friday night, it was pretty obvious to me that, hey, I think it’s time to do this.’ Without Boehner, the job of leading divided congressional Republicans falls more heavily on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — who declared nearly a year ago that the GOP’s prospects of reclaiming the White House depends substantially on showing the party can govern.

Boehner promised Sunday that his departure would ensure that won’t happen, issuing a flat “No” when asked if lawmakers would allow the government’s doors to shutter Thursday. Last week’s announcement came on the heels of a career high point for Boehner, a devout Catholic, after he hosted the pope at the Capitol on Thursday for a historic address to a joint meeting of Congress. The Roman-Catholic Ohio congressman described spending the day with his spiritual leader as deeply moving and a factor in the timing of his resignation announcement.

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