GOP Discontent That Helped Sink John Boehner Isn’t Easing Up

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

California’s McCarthy to Be Next Speaker, Republicans Say.

NEW YORK: The shock resignation of U.S. Last week, when Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, announced his resignation, I thanked him for his devotion to public service and wished him and his family the best of luck in their future endeavors.

House Republicans could vote internally as early as this week on who will replace current Speaker John Boehner, who unexpectedly announced on Friday he plans to resign in the midst of difficult budget negotiations. McCarthy, who currently holds the No. 2 position in the Republican leadership, will likely move up, Representatives Mick Mulvaney and Tom Cole said on “Fox News Sunday.” “The Senate is expected to pass a continuing resolution next week,” Boehner said on the CBS program “Face the Nation,” his first interview since announcing his resignation. “The House will take up the Senate bill.” He indicated that he will rely on Democratic votes in the House to pass the measure. “I expect my Democrat colleagues want to keep the government open as much as I do,” he said. The Ohio Republican, now unshackled from any worry about his leadership post or re-election, may in his last month in Congress try to forge deals on contentious issues ranging from increasing the U.S.debt limit to a long-term highway bill and re-authorizing the Export-Import Bank — initiatives many conservatives oppose.

On Sunday, he vowed that Congress will avoid a government shutdown, and he would push through as much unfinished legislation as possible before leaving at the end of October. To begin with, Boehner’s current plan to avoid a shutdown only keeps the government functioning until Dec. 11. “[A]t that point,” The Post’s Kelsey Snell reports, “the whole battle could replay itself.” Funding for Planned Parenthood is, not surprisingly, the headline issue, but there will be much pressure from the tea party on the new speaker to not just resist the president’s request to lift domestic spending caps, but also cut spending by 1 percent. Other Republicans are urging a delay so that the party can debate its priorities and so potential McCarthy challengers can consolidate support. “The important question is, will things change?

Disputes over these issues between the two parties and among Republicans will not be resolved by Boehner’s departure. “The next relevant question for financial markets will be how this affects the debt limit and other pending issues. Just coming close to a breach was enough for Standard & Poor’s to downgrade the U.S. credit rating for the first time in history, and for other ratings agencies to threaten downgrades. While the S&P 500 stock index actually rose about 3.0 percent during the last government shutdown in 2013, the gains occurred during a year when the index rose nearly 30 percent. Money for Social Security, Medicare, defense and dozens of other essential programs would dry up overnight, and financial markets would be thrown into a panic.

Since August 20, more than half of the trading sessions have seen moves of at least 1.0 percent in either direction on the benchmark S&P 500 index. “As you transition towards the later stages of negotiations, if they can’t get to a conclusion or a deal done, then absolutely the markets will take that as a third arrow in the quiver on market volatility and potential downside,” said David Lyon, global investment specialist at JP Morgan Private Bank in San Francisco. As a representative for Fort Hood, the most populous U.S. military installation in the world, I have seen firsthand what happens when Washington tries to make our brave men and women in uniform pay for its out-of-control spending. In the worst-case scenario, Boehner is replaced by a tea partier like Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), who would be at least sympathetic to indulging the far right’s insane brinksmanship.

A host of Fed officials are scheduled to speak, including Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, New York Fed President William Dudley, Chicago President Charles Evans and San Francisco President John Williams. The more likely replacement, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), is ideologically similar to Boehner and the more moderate portion of the GOP caucus. Investors will also eye reports on U.S. housing and manufacturing, and the week culminates with the September Labor Department payrolls and unemployment report.

But in addition to the pressure on McCarthy not to compromise with Obama right after winning the speakership, The Post reported Friday that “many believe McCarthy lacks the political and tactical gravitas to exert control over what has become an essentially ungovernable House.” Either way, the moment Boehner leaves his post, the odds of averting fiscal and economic trouble become a lot shorter. If Boehner wants to truly leave Washington in a noble fashion, nothing short of a longer spending deal and a debt ceiling increase before he departs will be enough.

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