Skip to comments.Boehner tightens grip on GOP rank and file ahead of deficit talks
Posted on 11/20/2012 8:51:24 AM PST by Qbert
Speaker John Boehner is tightening his grip on the House Republican Conference weeks before an anticipated vote on a deficit deal.
The Ohio Republican has smoothed over differences with Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), expanded his powers on the panel that doles out plum committee assignments, shot down a challenge to his earmark moratorium and worked behind the scenes to ensure that Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) would win her leadership contest.
All of Boehners moves are aimed at shoring up his influence over the GOP conference, which in turn maximizes the Speakers leverage with President Obama and the Democratic-controlled Senate.
Boehner cant afford to waste any of that leverage, which took a major hit in the elections that delivered Obama a second term and increased the number of Democrats in both the House and Senate. Any bipartisan agreement on taxes and spending reached by the White House and Boehner will test GOP unity a test House Republicans largely failed over the last two years.
Democrats seized on chaos in the House GOP ranks to divide and conquer Republicans at the negotiating table during the payroll tax extension debate earlier this year.
Administration officials and senior Democrats in Congress openly mused about tension between Boehner and Cantor, saying it played to their advantage.
However, the soap opera between Boehner and Cantor and their staffs, which dominated headlines in the summer of 2011 and into early 2012, has faded.
Theres a very strong relationship [building] effort going on there, a GOP lawmaker at the leadership table told The Hill, noting that Cantor last week delivered the speech nominating Boehner to be Speaker while Boehner nominated the Virginia Republican for majority leader.
Both Boehner and Cantor ran unopposed, but the symbol of the nominating speeches to the entire House Republican Conference was important and clearly thought out, the source said.
In 2010, Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.) nominated Boehner to be Speaker; Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) nominated Cantor for majority leader.
Lawmakers and others close to Boehner say the Speaker has more sway than he did over House Republicans following the Tea Party wave of 2010. Others maintain the jury is still out.
Yet Boehners internal support was on display when McMorris Rodgers, his favored candidate, captured the No. 4-ranked GOP leadership post.
The battle to be the head of the House GOP conference was a hard-fought one between McMorris Rodgers and former Republican Study Committee Chairman Tom Price (Ga.).
Boehner never officially endorsed McMorris Rodgers, but his support for her was well-known. Price, meanwhile, was backed by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).
Boehner was quick to include Ryan, back from the presidential campaign trail, in a small group of key lawmakers advising him of strategies ahead of the fiscal-cliff negotiations with the White House.
The appointment was a shrewd one; if Ryan endorses a fiscal-cliff pact, many conservatives in the House will fall in line.
Camp, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, and Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) also sit in on the fiscal-cliff meetings.
Boehner spokesman Kevin Smith told The Hill that House Republicans are the last line of defense against a government that spends, taxes and borrows too much.
Smith added that taking on that responsibility demands that we field the strongest team possible and put members in a position where their talents and expertise can be fully utilized on behalf of the conference and its goals.
Boehner rewards loyalty, and his power on the GOP Steering Committee which selects panel chairmen and other committee slots has been expanded.
Boehner now has five votes on the committee, up from four. Cantor has three and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has two, while everyone else registers one vote.
Boehner last week cut off a challenge to the earmark moratorium that he implemented in the conference years ago. After Boehner made his opposition clear, Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) withdrew his amendment before it came to a roll-call vote.
A respected and affable Speaker, Boehner has nonetheless struggled to secure votes on high-profile bills in the 112th Congress.
He has needed Democratic votes to pass bills on averting a government shutdown and raising the debt limit.
Boehner is well-aware that there will be GOP defections on a potential fiscal-cliff deal, though he will seek to rally as much support as he can for whatever agreement is brokered.
In the wake of the GOPs stinging losses in the election, Boehner acknowledged that his party would be willing to accept new revenue code for tax increases if the president were willing to cut spending and reform entitlement programs.
On Monday, Boehner attempted to play offense as his press office circulated an email titled GOP open to revenue via tax reform; now lets talk spending cuts.
He’s tough with the GOP
get out boehner, our the house needs to throw him out.
Cantor, Bonehead and Rogers mentioned in this article are all from states the GOP did not carry.
***All of Boehners moves are aimed at shoring up his influence over the GOP conference, ...***
Boeher now has more influence than before. And this is to be an encouraging development?
Our message to our reps need to be clear. If Boehner folds in this, we are sitting home in 2014. If he doesn’t stand up for the positions we elected our reps to promote, he needs to be replaced as Speaker.
“The Party That Just Doesn’t Get It” strikes again.
"Hes tough with the GOP"
He's like Romney: viciously attack members of your own party when it serves you, and then French kiss your opponents at the most inopportune time.
exactly...we need a real deal leading the war front
Too bad these guys aren't as tough with the 'Rats as they are with people on their own side.
Remember, Boehner didn't fold in the last talks.
In fact, he walked out on Obama when Obama brought up tax hikes.
Obama then tried to call Boehner but the Speaker did NOT take Obama's calls which infuriated Obama.
"Our message to our reps need to be clear. If Boehner folds in this, we are sitting home in 2014."
No. We need to be even better organized to take out every Republican that votes for this in the next primaries. I don't care if they call themselves "Tea Party" members, or not. They need to go.
I just hope the Gestapo Lady doesn't make him cry on national TV again.
The MSM inserts this in just about every story to try to enrage the right.
But closing loopholes has been on the conservative wishlist (simplifying the tax code) for decades.
It rankles that Boehner uses ten times the coercion on Republicans than he would ever use on Democrats.
Votes for what?
No bill has been written yet.
I thought the GOP gained House seats?
Understand this: HE DOES NOT CARE what we think. He is maneuvering his positions to exclude or weaken the TEA PARTY conservatives as much as possible. Which should make us more resolute in electing MORE TEA PARTY conservatives.
He’s a weeping little girl with Obama and the Dems, but he sprouts hair on his chest when he talks to even bigger weenies in the GOP caucus. Disgusting. They had every right to dump him and start with new leadership after this election. It appears they like to be screwed.
"But closing loopholes has been on the conservative wishlist (simplifying the tax code) for decades."
It's one thing to close loopholes- if you get reduced rates. But where are the reduced rates? We can't keep relying on nebulous promises in the future.
so now he’s house king boehner?
See post #18.
He really wants to be minority leader in 2014.
" Votes for what? No bill has been written yet."
Okay, I was unclear. I meant if they vote for tax increases on job creators, which is the direction things seem to be heading.
Shut it down - leave the debt ceiling right where it is.
Does he automatically get the majority leader position next term?
he said the party is open to increased revenue . . . as the byproduct of a growing economy, energized by a simpler, cleaner, fairer tax code, with fewer loopholes, and lower rates for all.
Now, I expect the GOP will bargain if Obama is open to any kind of meaningful entitlement reform. Don't know what form that will take. Will we get 100% of what we want? (which is of course what FR wants but of course negotiations don't usually work that way). We'll see.
Boehner and the likes of others need to be informed of their lack of standing even in their own states. What a sorry situation of unearned power/influence. Reminds me of the song connected to Evita Peron.
There is no other conclusion than to say any conservative that supports the republican party establishment in not conservative....
One - if nothing is done, the "Bush tax cuts" expire and taxes go up on everyone, including and especially the middle class and small business owners.
Two - we don't want that to happen. The president claims he doesn't want that to happen.
Three - I have here in my hand (he waves a single sheet of paper) a bill that will make the Bush tax Cuts permanent. He then reads the single sentence bill. And says he will bring it to the floor tomorrow and after it passes he will send it to the senate.
Four - he states if the senate refuses to consider it, then then the result will be the "Reid tax hikes"
No, the House members vote.
There is no challenge for him which mean the members (even the tea party members) are backing him contrary to the MSM reports which always tell us he is unpopular.
House members actually like and respect him. Let's pray God gives him strength for the upcoming fight.
It's a test they were elected to FAIL! If the voters wanted a rubber stamp Congress they would have returned nancy pelosi and her goons to power in 2010. That didn't happen then and didn't happen in 2012! I really hate the press jackals who refuse to acknowledge any reality contrary to their self designed narratives.
The media will simply call it a tax cut for the rich as they have been doing for the last year.
"Now, I expect the GOP will bargain if Obama is open to any kind of meaningful entitlement reform. Don't know what form that will take. Will we get 100% of what we want? (which is of course what FR wants but of course negotiations don't usually work that way). We'll see."
The Senate Dems have flat out said "No" to any entitlement reform. Obama has declared multiple times he wants to raise taxes on the "wealthy". So, what you're likely to be stuck with is a situation where loopholes are taken out, without reduced rates (which effectively is a tax increase)... all for a "binding" promise next year to work on entitlement reform. The Dems will then use that to demagogue Republicans for the mid-term elections. Just watch.
Say what you want, but without immediate entitlement reforms, the rest is meaningless. They will just keep kicking the can down the road.
I fear total capitulation.
Boehner doesn’t give a damn about conservatives and their issues.
The party has tried its bet to get rid of tea party conservatives.
Got to go along to get along and they ALL b making money.
It goes without saying that the DNC is corrupt greedy. That is not a revelation.
That said, does anyone really have confidence in the GOP establishment, at this point?
Where does that leave Conservative Americans?
I was living on the hope that “O’s” abysmal performance in his first term would certainly preclude a second term for him.
Now, I m not sure that Os equally (if not worse) second term will keep ANOTHER Liberal out of the WH.
It’s a desperate situation for Conservatives. Among the many challenges they face in the next four years are:
Clarify their relationship (if any remains) with the GOP establishment
If there really is NO common ground with the GOP establishment, formalize their status as an alternate party
Groom and field alternate and electable candidates for offices across the board, including a Presidential nominee strong enough and committed enough to challenge a GOP nominee
Articulate a clear and forceful posture on the basic issues and STICK TO IT!
Pledge to US and to EACH OTHER that absolutely NO intimidation by the Liberals and their biased MSM creatures will go unanswered
It will be impossible to go on and continue calling ourselves Conservatives if at least THIS much isnt accomplished.
Of course they have. That's obviously what they've been saying for years.
is a situation where loopholes are taken out, without reduced rates (which effectively is a tax increase)... all for a "binding" promise next year
Don't think so. Reid is the one who has called for everything to be negotiated now while Obama's popularity is highest (including so-called entitlemmet reform). They don't want any part of a deal to go till next year when the Obamacare taxes are hitting.
Boehner will likely put off some of the negotiations till next year (in order to see Obama's popularity diminish first) but will tie it to something the Dems want now to force them back to the table.
Regardless of what a scumball Boehner is, let’s be clear on one point: The Hill is a Marxist publication designed to promote fascism and communism, and the commie slut who wrote this did so to infuriate and divide conservatives.
Personally, I myself don't believe ANYTHING the media writes about Boehner knowing this is exactly their intention. OF COURSE their intent is to get conservatives to despise their leader.
They succeeded in getting Hastert hated so Pelosi could take over.
Their ploy works just about every time.
Yes, he's tough with his fellow Republicans. Shoot down the Earmarks, then give Barry and company a few trillion for THEIR cronies.
It might make sense if the Republicans swore off earmarks and then used it as a powerful propaganda weapon against the Democrats. But did they even mention it during the late campaign? Do the news media ever mention it? Does anyone know about it? Or remember it from about four years ago or whenever it was that they first did it?
Nothing like beating yourself over the head and not even making any practical use of it.
I consider the media our main enemy. This is where the most active and effective commies live. Their purpose has been twofold: 1) raise Obama and 2) get us to train our guns on the GOP.
If ALL guns were pointed at the media instead of ourselves this would solve 90% of the problem IMO.
This is exactly what he is supposed to do. They are all whored out to the elites that own them exclusively.
Boehner has shored up his power. Great now he can lead the whole GOP cadre over the cliff with him. We are so screwed.