“First of all, let’s put to rest the lie that this somehow is a bipartisan crisis, or that President Obama somehow is being obstructionist, or is flouting popular will. The reality is that the president is eager to sign a clean continuing resolution, while the Senate has already voted for one. The only problem is the House.” The person who is second in line of succession to the Presidency is also the leader of the Republican majority in the House. He and he alone led this attack on the government of the United States. Unfortunately, his malfeasance doesn’t end there.
“The United States moved closer to the possibility of the first-ever default on the government’s debt Sunday as Speaker John Boehner adamantly ruled out a House vote on a straightforward bill to boost the borrowing authority without concessions from President Barack Obama.”
Until Sunday, October 7, 2013, many pundits, politicians, and private citizens have expressed tolerance or even sympathy for the Speaker of the House. It was almost as if people believed he was a victim of rude or rowdy behavior from members of his caucus or interlopers from the Senate. Now we know there was nothing of the sort behind his behavior. He planned all along to engage in hostage taking and ransom demanding. The Speaker cares fervently about one thing and one thing only – retaining his position and the power and perquisites that go with it.
Knowing and accepting that Speaker Boehner is a prime actor in the ongoing neo-confederate coup effort allows us to dispense with tactics that assume he will be a willing participant in defeating it. On this basis, we can focus on tactics that pressure him into conceding the futility of the coup attempt and thence calling it off.
Mr. Boehner is treacherous because he has cultivated an image that allowed him to advance sabotage of the constitutional Republic while masquerading as a loyal practitioner of constitutional governance. For example in November 2012, Boehner said:
“It’s pretty clear that the president was re-elected. Obamacare is the law of the land. If we were to put Obamacare into the CR [the bill funding the government, known as a continuing resolution] and send it over to the Senate, we were risking shutting down the government. That is not our goal.”
So after saying and repeating that shutting down the government was not his goal, Boehner led the effort to pass a continuing resolution that did exactly what he denied wanting to do.
Then, in March, 2013, “Sean Hannity challenged the speaker and asked him if he were prepared to do whatever was necessary to thwart Obamacare.” After explaining that with a Democratic Senate and a Democratic President it was difficult for the Republicans “to impose our will on them” he asked Hannity, “Do you want to risk the full faith and credit of the United States government over Obamacare? That’s a very tough argument to make.” On the eighth day of the government shutdown he denied wanting, Boehner is not ruling out default if the Senate and President won’t have a conversation. Therefore, while posing as a reasonable American political leader, Speaker Boehner provided coverage for neo-confederate saboteurs who worked diligently to incite enthusiasm for both shutting down the government and threatening the full faith and credit of the United States.
At the start of September, Boehner told Harry Reid that he wanted a clean budget resolution—no Obamacare strings attached—at a spending level reflecting the automatic budget cuts that resulted from the 2011 debt ceiling showdown. Reid cooperated and realized accepting this reduced spending level would be a compromise from the Democratic perspective. Then, Boehner allowed a continuing resolution to originate in the House that demanded the defunding of the Affordable Care Act. In short, he had lied to the Senate Majority Leader and fired the open salvo in the neo-confederate attack on the operation of the United States government. This is one more instance of bad faith and betrayal on Boehner’s part and Harry Reid seems to be one of the Democratic politicians starting to pierce Boehner’s reasonable man disguise to see the rabid power seeker underneath.
Now the government is shut down and the debt limit is approaching. Boehner’s treachery has brought us to a place where some unpleasant facts confront us. First, the Democrats have agreed to a funding level for the government that was proposed by Republicans. While there have been seventeen government shutdowns since the Carter administration, the only two serious ones in recent history have been the result of intransigent Republican demands. Although Boehner uses the term – conversation obsessively for its veneer of reasonableness, he has refused eighteen Democratic budget conference requests over the last six months. At least since May of this year Republicans have openly expressed their desire to delay negotiations until they had a government crisis of some kind to use as a threat. This could have been either the debt ceiling or the shutdown of the government. Now they are using both as the Democrats seem determined to stand against their demands. Republicans posture as though they want to compromise, but all they offer is a functioning government at their funding levels and intact credit if they get everything they want. It should be obvious they are trying to gain by threats what they cannot gain through normal processes. Despite Republican instance to the contrary, the deficit is dropping, not growing. The American people do not support shutting down the government to eliminate the Affordable Care Act. A government lasting a month is projected to decrease GDP by 1 percent and cost over one million jobs. The Democratic Party has never demanded a ransom from Presidents in return for increasing the debt ceiling. Contrary to Boehner’s statement in November 2012, this entire threatening situation is part of a Republican effort to deny the working poor affordable health care and to invalidate the results of the 2012 election.
The Speaker of the House is second in line of Presidential succession. Whoever holds this office is not merely a member of the House of Representatives. The occupant of this office has a crucial position in our constitutional Republic. When this person is a master of treachery, the entire system of governance is imperiled.
The game plan of the neo-confederate Republican Party is to take over America. The showdown and the debt ceiling threats are preludes to 2016, when they plan to run Senator Ted Cruz for President. As any careful observer knows, Cruz is a virtual reincarnation of Senator Joe McCarthy. He is the chief Fire-Eater in Washington and he is orchestrating not only the current extortion but the purging of reasonable Republicans from the Get Obama Party. Democrats must not give in and they should not negotiate under duress by extortionists. The neo-confederates are not acting in good faith with their oath of office or with our constitutional Republic. Like their forebears from the 1850s they will not relent until and unless they are resoundingly defeated. If they succeed in repealing a law they detest and nullifying an election they lost, the only thing left is an outright coup d’état.
The President and Senator Reid must not forget this simple truth: “The oath of a liar is no oath at all.” John Boehner has violated his oath of office. He lied. There is no basis for good faith negotiations with a treacherous individual there is only recognition of the treachery and thwarting it. Hopefully whatever gods may be will bless them in their efforts and bless the United States of America.
About the Author: Larry Conley
I live in Allegheny County, PA. I am married and a father of twins. I served in the U S Army and saw hostile fire in Vietnam. When I was in the Army I took and oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. I have never rescinded that oath. br> For whatever time remains for me, I will do all in my power to answer the question, "What can I do for my country?" br > View My Profile