Odds-on Favorite for Next Speaker Known for Political Skill

26 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Bye, Boehner.

“This morning, I woke up, I said my prayers and decided today’s the day I’m going to do this,” John Boehner told a press conference on September 25th, shortly after startling both foes and allies by announcing his resignation as Speaker of the House of Representatives.“It’s become clear to me that this prolonged leadership turmoil would do irreparable harm to the institution so this morning I informed my colleagues that I would resign from the speakership and resign from Congress at the end of October,” he said. Told that he looked relieved to be stepping down, the most powerful Republican in America grinned and sang a burst of “Zip-a-dee-Doo-Dah.” Reasonable observers had to feel a twinge of sympathy for Mr Boehner. The sweet part is that after 20 years of trying, the former altar boy finally got a pope to address Congress, an achievement that so moved him he practically wept through the entire event.

Cruz led the celebration of House Speaker John Boehner’s resignation. (AP) WASHINGTON — The news of House Speaker John Boehner’s resignation brought hundreds of religious conservatives to their feet to cheer — and one after another, much of the Republican Party’s presidential class joined Friday in their rejoicing. “I’m not here to bash anyone, but the time has come to turn the page,” said Florida Sen. His nearly five years as Speaker have been marked by endless revolts from the hard-right, and demands to launch futile assaults on laws dear to President Barack Obama—assaults which were doomed because Republicans lack the 60-vote super-majority in the Senate needed to ram their wishes through against the wishes of the Democratic minority (and are even further away from the two-thirds majority needed to overcome a presidential veto). The bitter part was that Boehner was once again caught in yet another government shutdown drama, with a recalcitrant supporting cast happy for Boehner to be the star of a show that flops every time. Marco Rubio, who shared the stunning development with the crowd at the annual Value Voters forum in Washington, where the rowdy cheers spanned 30 seconds. Now, with a faction of conservative House Republicans again threatening to oust Boehner from leadership, he’s resigning in an effort to spare the institution leadership turmoil in addition to its usual dysfunction.

Emboldened tea party leaders across the nation celebrated, too, on a remarkable day for a GOP starkly divided between its ardent ideologues and its pragmatic establishment. Mr Boehner’s resignation came as the federal government seemed doomed to shut down next week, after dozens of members of his own party said they would not pass a government-funding bill that included a single federal dollar for Planned Parenthood, a non-profit organisation that offers abortions as well as other medical services for women. With less than five months before Iowa’s presidential caucuses, Boehner’s downfall served as a victory for its conservative wing and a rallying cry for those who seek to ride its frustrations to the White House. “If we are splintered, a moderate establishment candidate runs up the middle with 23 percent of the vote, steals the nomination and then loses to Hillary Clinton in the general election,” said Texas Sen. He did this for his friends who he didn’t want to have to take a tough vote,” said Sam Geduldig, a GOP operative close to Boehner. “Now all that’s left is his stump for them to sit on. We’re so proud of him.” A SAD CHRISTMAS: One of Boehner’s saddest moments as speaker came two days before Christmas in 2011, when Boehner was all alone in the lower chamber so nobody could yell at him while the House approved a package of tax cuts that were about to expire.

Boehner’s announcement shocked the Capitol, and came less than 24 hours after an emotional moment for the Cincinnati Republican when he introduced Pope Francis as his guest Thursday to a joint session of Congress. “We were at a tipping point with frustration in the conference regarding leadership,” Ratcliffe said. “The fact is we weren’t successfully advancing conservative principles.” “I consider him a friend and someone that I’m ideologically aligned with on most issues, but I certainly don’t want to imply that he’s considering,” Ratcliffe said. If conservatives unite, we win.” The Republican establishment repeatedly beat back conservative challenges in the 2014 midterm elections, helping to give their party control of both chambers of Congress.

Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) told reporters that December that he saw Boehner in the hallway and wished him a merry Christmas, adding that he told Boehner he “felt for him” and that Boehner’s eyes watered. “Speaker Boehner did not make this mess. Late on Thursday night, leaving a darkened Capitol, Mr Boehner startled two waiting reporters from the Washington Post and Politico by recounting, with tears in his eyes, that the pope had asked him to pray for him. The billionaire suggested that while some people may like Boehner personally, “we want people who are going to get it done.” “How can it be that we’ve sent a Republican majority to Congress, and yet they still not able to stop our country from sliding in the wrong direction?” asked Rubio, a Republican member of Congress. He presented his departure as a way to spare Congress the agonies of a fresh bout of Republican in-fighting, after it became clear that the far-right was again planning a bid to oust him. His first major campaign as chairman was a bill that would have overhauled how Americans finance their homes, a reform that thrilled many on the right but was seen as too radical by House leaders, who never gave the bill a vote.

Rick Santorum, another 2016 presidential contender, railed against Republicans in Congress who backed down, even when given the opportunity to focus American’s attention on “the horror of abortion.” At roughly the same time that Santorum and other were toasting Boehner’s resignation, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus praised him as “a tireless advocate for conservative principles.” In a written statement issued by his office, Priebus said, “our party owes him a great debt.” Former Florida Gov. The news was broken by Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, who is running for his party’s presidential nomination, and who told the whooping throng that the time had come to “turn the page” and choose a “new generation of leaders”. SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT: In 2013, the government actually shut down, resulting in billions of dollars of economic damage for which Republicans were blamed. Another senator with White House ambitions, Ted Cruz of Texas, was still more explicit, telling the crowd that Republican leaders had promised to “fight for conservative principles”, only to achieve “absolutely nothing” once they arrived in Washington. The charter for that agency, which helps finance American firms’ exports, expired this summer, infuriating some of America’s largest companies and their supporters.

They really haven’t stayed true to conservative values,” said Pam Anderson, a marina manager who traveled to the conference from Panama City, Florida. Mr Cruz’s logic is simple enough: in his telling, if Mr Boehner and his fellow party leaders were proper conservatives, they would shut the government down rather than let federal money flow to things that Republicans dislike. But in the end, he decided to let the conservatives in the caucus let out some steam first, which ended up costing the government $24 billion dollars or so. NEARLY DEFAULTING ON THE DEBT: In the summer of 2011, Congress flirted with a debt ceiling crisis, and Boehner almost struck a “grand bargain” with President Barack Obama only to see it collapse in a cloud of recrimination. Bill Flores, R-Bryan. “You’re still going to have a Senate who’s refusing to stand up to the filibuster rule, and you’ll have a speaker who’s subject to having his head cut off,” Flores said. “The House has a lot of issues to deal with, and I’m not sure that the dynamics have changed much.” To post a comment, log into your chosen social network and then add your comment below.

From that moment, however, we did get a few interesting items: a downgrade of the U.S. credit rating by Standards & Poor, the whole movement to “mint the coin!” and sequestration, which has reduced our deficit but also stymied economic growth and important things like biomedical research. He more or less endorsed an amiable conservative from California, Representative Kevin McCarthy, who is currently the House Majority Leader, or second-ranked member, to be his successor.

Mr McCarthy has better relations with the far-right than Mr Boehner, but he will face exactly the same tensions between pragmatists who see their job as securing the most conservative policies they can, given the balance of power in Washington, and purists who equate compromise as treason. In a House floor speech during the 2010 Obamacare debate, Boehner famously bellowed, “Hell no you can’t!” He was answering his own question about whether legislators could say the bill had been written openly. At the time, a Benghazi committee seemed totally superfluous, since many investigations had already been launched into the Sept. 11, 2011, attacks on the compound. He is a golf-loving, pro-business, small-government Reagan conservative of the sort that can be found in every Rotary Club and chamber of commerce in the country.

What a moment for our country,” Boehner said Thursday. “I’m so proud that so many came to greet the Pope here at our Capitol, the world’s greatest symbol of democracy.

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