The editorial board at the Wall Street Journal, one of the most conservative publications in the country, has even had enough with the House Republicans games:
As we went to press Tuesday night, Republican leaders in the House had abandoned a plan to pass a debt-increase bill that was nearly identical to the one that Senate leaders agreed to on Monday. The main differences were funding the government only through December 15, rather than January 15 in the Senate bill, and a provision to require Members of Congress and their staff to live by ObamaCare’s subsidies.
None of that was enough to please the small band of 20 or so House conservatives who have been all but running the House since this fiasco began. They refused to support House Speaker John Boehner and even Budget Chairman Paul Ryan. Another 30 or so Members were tired of getting kicked around by Heritage Action and Senator Ted Cruz and want the whole thing settled. With Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi keeping her troops in line for a no vote, GOP leaders pulled the bill from the floor.
The conservatives thus undermined whatever small leverage the House GOP had left. Without a united majority of 218 votes, Republicans might as well hand the Speaker’s gavel to Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid. Senate leaders announced immediately that they would resume negotiating to finish a deal that they would bring to the floor as early as Wednesday.
So what the “liberal media” and Democrats have been saying all along, that this shutdown and the imminent default this week is the fault of the GOP, is now being echoed by the conservative media. Even the publication of William F. Buckley, Jr. isn’t being too nice, publishing this rather scathing quote from a GOP aide:
“You ever think you’d see the day where Republicans would demand removinglanguage that delays a tax?” wondered a third GOP aide. “I feel like I’m in the Twilight Zone.”
Yesterday’s House fiasco will most likely becoming part of a lecture in future political science courses, where they discuss low points in American leadership failure. This will become the legacy John Boehner leaves and he has no one to blame but himself. As the NRO article points out, the decision to scrap the vote came due to pressure from The Heritage Foundation and FreedomWorks. People of all corners of the political spectrum continuously denounce special interest running our government, but never before has this non-democratic practice been as blatantly obvious as it was yesterday. Republicans jumped at saying these right wing groups are what caused the collapse of the latest plan to reopen the government, as if they were using them as a scapegoat. That, however, shows just how void of leadership the House GOP is.
And now I’m sitting here thinking about conservative media turning on the House GOP so quickly and in the back of my mind I can’t help but think that Republicans will soon long for the days of approval ratings at 21%.