Skip to comments.John Boehner struggles to keep up with base
Posted on 09/17/2009 6:20:41 PM PDT by counterpunch
Minority Leader John Boehner spent much of last week trying to persuade a stubborn Rep. Joe Wilson to apologize to the House telling associates he needed to get to Wilson before the weekend to elicit an apology.
But as the days dragged on, Boehner had to back off: Wilsons spine was stiffened by $1.5 million in campaign contributions, the Democrats anti-Wilson rhetoric had become increasingly extreme, and the South Carolina Republican was rapidly accumulating support from the conferences dominant right wing.
At some point, he realized he had no choice but to get behind Wilson because thats where his conference was going and he was just so angry that the Democrats had pushed this thing so far, said a GOP aide with knowledge of the situation.
Like a surfer riding the heavy waves before a hurricane, Boehner, a conservative with a penchant for compromise, has spent the past few months trying to harness the anger of the GOP base without allowing his conference to veer too far to the right.
But never were the strains of that balancing act more apparent than during the Wilson vote, as the Ohio Republican tried to juggle his commitment to bipartisan civility with his responsibility to a besieged member of his conference.
Its very hard these days to be a leader like John Boehner who tries to find the middle ground, said former Connecticut Republican Rep. Chris Shays, one of the last Northeastern moderates, who was beaten by Democrat Jim Himes last year.
Hes a conservative, but hes less conservative than his base, Shays added. And hes got to lead a party that has been so battered and beaten that its incredibly angry angry at whats going on in the country, angry at the way its being treated by the majority.
(Excerpt) Read more at politico.com ...
This disconnect is why voters still don't trust the GOP. It's time for Mike Pence as House Republican Leader.
Boehner presided as Majority and then Minority Leader over two consecutive historical losses for the GOP. It is insanity that he is still leading the Republicans in the House. He is the reason the GOP appears directionless.
The GOP desperately needs new leadership, particularly in the House, if they hope to capitalize on the public discontent with 0bama and the Democrats.
Mike Pence for leader NOW! Before the Republican party -- and the American people -- miss their opportunity.
Pence, Wilson, Steele, Beck, Giles, O’Keefe and DeMint—Keep on fighting on!
Before attacking Boehner too much this is from Politico who has been trying to split Republicans. I am not defending but saying before careful of Politico.
Boehner was on Friday defending Wilson and saying he apologized once which was enough.
Boehner’s title should be “Demiocrats Liason to the Republican Party.”
>> At some point, [Boehner] realized he had no choice but to get behind Wilson because thats where his conference was going... “
Boehner went limp on us. Again. It’s time to pull him out of there, IMO.
Boehner could take a lesson from Joe Wilson. Think of the money he could raise if he acted more like a Conservative.
An excellent idea!
I totally agree with you. Boehner didn’t have what it took to defund Acorn last year (see: http://republicanleader.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=104602); but two complete novices were able to do it without any the money, power or media influence of Boehner. Time to get rid of the dead wood.
Ledru-Rollin had nothing on Boehner.
I actually think Boehner is pretty conservative personally, but he’s caught a bit of Beltwayitis, not an uncommon malady and very catching, it seems. Maybe the way we got behind Wilson will help him see the light.
Stand up for what’s right, don’t back down, and screw the left because they will certainly screw you. And if you don’t see what’s at stake, or you don’t have the fight in you, move over.
I hear Beltwayitis is rampant in the tanning salons.
Hey, John Boehner, in case you haven’t noticed, we are taking our party back! Do things our way, or go away!
It would be more accurate to say that he has a tiger by the tail.
Maybe the way we got behind Wilson will help him see the light.People have been saying "maybe this will make Boehner see the light" everytime, since as long as he's been 'leader'.
I know, counterpunch. Hope over experience.
I want to keep everyone who can be effective and dump everyone who can’t. Still trying to feel out who they are.
Hope over experience.Wasn't that 0bama's campaign slogan?
Republicans: Desperately trying to keep up with their conservative leader constituents.
Only by comparison to a group like the GOP could Rep. Wilson be said to have a “spine;”
what sort of gutless weenie would in a moment of extreme agitation inadvertently tell the truth, then apologize for it???
If they don't begin doing that within the next 60 days or so, then they risk being voted out of office in 2010, whether they are Democrats, Republicans, Independents, or whatever.
Future generations of Americans will either live free or in bondage to big government. It is up to 2010 voters to begin to assure their future in liberty.
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