Speaker Vote Kabuki Theater

As much as I’d like to see someone other than John Boehner elected as speaker, I don’t think that’s going to happen. I think this is engineered so the Tea Party guys can look like they’re getting tough on the leadership, without actually changing anything. If this ends any other way I’ll be surprised. Jim Geraghty notes in today’s Morning Jolt:




The problem in budget negotiations for Republicans is that a) the public isn’t as outraged about wasteful and excessive spending as Republicans and conservatives are; b) the president is a shameless demagogue who commands the bully pulpit; c) most of the media will happily assist the president by blaming Republicans for every school bus full of kids that doesn’t get to visit the Smithsonian during a government shutdown […]

Those factors bedeviled Republicans before John Boehner was Speaker, they have bedeviled them throughout his Speakership, and they are likely to bedevil them for the near future.

And it will bedevil them even if Boehner isn’t speaker. We visited with one of Bitter’s friends who works on the Hill over the holiday, and were discussing the real concern about the base’s expectations for what the GOP can accomplish for the next two years, and whether by 2016 the base is going to be dejected and demoralized for lack of accomplishments, and therefore decide to stay home. Of course, the other choice is to fight, fight, fight, get creamed the press and steamrollered by Obama, and lose the election because LIVs think we’re mean spirited, and Independents get turned off by the whole spectacle. It’s kind of a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation.

Ideologically, I have some sympathies for the Tea Party position (to whatever degree you can divine exactly what it stands for), but they’ve shown little understanding for how the system works. Maybe it shouldn’t work this way, but it does, and changing it isn’t going to be easy. Sure, I agree Boehner isn’t a guy who’s going to change anything, except maybe the shade of his fake tan, but I’d also be wary of a hard core Tea Party type who’s going to pick all the wrong fights.

UPDATE: Looks like he won the vote count, with 24 voting against. 29 would have been needed to send this to a second ballot.

2 thoughts on “Speaker Vote Kabuki Theater”

  1. Politics is, to a large extent, kabuki theater in all aspects. I suspect this is endemic to the human condition.

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