The debt limit increase is not a loser for the GOP. Let it go.

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boehner head on stick

It’s a winner.

The House passed a “clean” debt ceiling bill and sent it on to the Senate, accompanied by a lot of griping.

The vast majority of Republicans voted against the bill, while nearly 200 Democrats carried it across the finish line. 28 Republicans voted “yes.”

Speaker John Boehner, who usually does not vote, voted “yes,” as did Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Whip Kevin McCarthy. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan voted “no.”

Cantor blamed the debt ceiling increase on Democrats. “House Republicans need more responsible and willing partners in Washington so we can finally and boldly address our long term debt crisis,” he said in a statement.

Ryan called the vote a “missed opportunity.”

“We need to pay our bills today and make sure we can pay our bills tomorrow,” Ryan said in a statement after the vote.

The House GOP’s inability to force even a modest fight on the debt ceiling prompted an outcry from conservative groups, including several calls to replace the current House leadership.

Some conservative groups called for Boehner’s head.

The Senate Conservatives Fund says that it is time for House Speaker John Boehner to go and they will keep track of the GOP lawmakers that support their effort to oust him from his leadership post.

The group, which is targeting several incumbent Republicans in primary races this year, said Mr. Boehner, Ohio Republican, has sold out small government principles on too many occasions and the last straw came this week when House GOP leaders signaled they were going to support a bill to increase the nation’s borrowing limit without attaching any strings to reduce spending.

“There’s only one solution. John Boehner must be replaced as Speaker of the House,” said Matt Hoskins, group’s executive director.

I understand the principle, but they’re wrong.

Predictably, left wing sources have called it a “capitulation” and a “surrender.”

This is a good thing. Boehner has been thrown into the briar patch.

Boehner and the GOP have no leverage against democrats in this battle. None. Obama can just sit back and once again refuse to negotiate and let the government shut down while blaming Republicans. Republicans suffered for that once already:

The budget confrontation that led to a partial government shutdown dealt a major blow to the GOP’s image and has exposed significant divisions between tea party supporters and other Republicans, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey highlights just how badly the GOP hard-liners and the leaders who went along with them misjudged the public mood. In the aftermath, eight in 10 Americans say they disapprove of the shutdown. Two in three Republicans or independents who lean Republican share a negative view of the impasse. And even a majority of those who support the tea party movement disapprove.

The absolute last thing the right should want is a repeat performance. Obamacare is in a tailspin, the economy sucks and Obama is unilaterally and illegally rewriting the law in a baldly obvious attempt to stave off the economic damage he knows it will visit on the country and protect vulnerable democrats in the upcoming elections. All efforts should be concentrated on focusing the nation’s attention on that and that alone. If they do anything, it ought to be passing a bill that demands Obama enforce the law as written. That’d be a winner and it would crush democrats.

Cracks in are even appearing in the Media Wall that protects Obama. Ron Fournier says he “sick of defending Obamacare.”

It’s getting difficult and slinking toward impossible to defend the Affordable Care Act. The latest blow to Democratic candidates, liberal activists, and naïve columnists like me came Monday from the White House, which announced yet another delay in the Obamacare implementation.

For the second time in a year, certain businesses were given more time before being forced to offer health insurance to most of their full-time workers. Employers with 50 to 99 workers were given until 2016 to comply, two years longer than required by law. During a yearlong grace period, larger companies will be required to insure fewer employees than spelled out in the law.

Not coincidentally, the delays punt implementation beyond congressional elections in November, which raises the first problem with defending Obamacare: The White House has politicized its signature policy.

The win-at-all-cost mentality helped create a culture in which a partisan-line vote was deemed sufficient for passing transcendent legislation. It spurred advisers to develop a dishonest talking point—”If you like your health plan, you’ll be able to keep your health plan.” And political expediency led Obama to repeat the line, over and over and over again, when he knew, or should have known, it was false.

Major Garrett is tired of it as well:

But it’s time to concede that no one has been more adept or aggressive about delaying and defanging Obamacare than Obama himself. Systematically and with an eye toward his party’s immediate political troubles, Obama has reshaped, photo-shopped, reimagined, and reengineered Obamacare. It all sounds techy and cool and flexible—at least to the administration. To those who must live with and live under the law, the arbitrary is the norm. The only pattern is chaos. Obamacare’s worst enemy is Obama.

Democrats are running ads against Obamacare.

Companies are being forced to swear allegiance to the Chairman.

Let us not snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. There is a much bigger prize to be won- the Senate. Screw the debt limit increase. Let it go.


image courtesy of the Washington Times

DrJohn has been a health care professional for more than 30 years. In addition to clinical practice he has done extensive research and has published widely with over 70 original articles and abstracts in the peer-reviewed literature. DrJohn is well known in his field and has lectured on every continent except for Antarctica. He has been married to the same wonderful lady for over 30 years and has three kids- two sons, both of whom are attorneys and one daughter on her way into the field of education. DrJohn was brought up with the concept that one can do well if one is prepared to work hard but nothing in life is guaranteed. Except for liberals being foolish.

12 Responses to “The debt limit increase is not a loser for the GOP. Let it go.”

  1. 2

    Nanny G

    Democrats are awfully good at goading Republicans into breaking what Ronald Reagan called the eleventh commandment…..do not speak evil against a fellow Republican.
    Fall into the Dem trap at your own peril.
    While it may be said that we could both walk and chew gum, sometimes the foreseeable consequences are too bad for us to bother.
    So, you are correct, we should pick our battles so as to win.
    Why bother hitting at the air?

  2. 3

    Bill Burris

    Republicans avoided a protracted fight (which would have been lost, since the Democrats have the media and all Republicans have is principal) so, once the dust settles, it is back to discussing what a massive and embarrassing failure Obamacare is. Obama has had to do what he shut the government down to prevent the Republicans from doing, because his law is just so bad; delay more mandates.

    Now, the CBO has come out and said the debt poses a major crisis to our economy. And, who is now wholly responsible for that? The Democrats, because they have been applauding themselves for getting this bill of irresponsibility passed.

    The Democrats built and passed Obamacare all by themselves. The disaster is all theirs. They have almost doubled the national debt in 5 years. The responsibility for that is all theirs as well. The Republicans should stop providing them the cover of their lap-dog media by fighting them as they cultivate their own destruction.

    So, back to Obamacare and economic failure.

  3. 4

    Ditto

    The passing of this debt limit increase is, yes, in some ways a good thing for Conservative candidates, because they can use the perpetual out of control spending by Congress and what it means for future generations in their campaigning. This is huge ammunition against both irresponsible spendthrift Democrats currently in Congress, and the “don’t even negotiate it” RINOS who also voted for the bill.

  4. 8

    Ditto

    @DrJohn:

    The “usual suspects” RINOs to add to your ” to Primary list” In the Senate: Here are the 12 Republicans who voted for cloture and helped the Democrats raise the debt limit without any spending reductions:

    John Barrasso (R-WY)
    Susan Collins (R-ME)
    Bob Corker (R-TN)
    John Cornyn (R-TX)
    Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
    Mike Johanns (R-NE)
    Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
    Mark Kirk (R-IL)
    John McCain (R-AZ)
    Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
    Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
    John Thune (R-SD)

    Twenty-eight Republicans voted yes on the debt ceiling vote and broke with most of the GOP. You will notice again the “usual suspects”:

    House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio
    Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va
    Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif
    Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.)
    Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.)
    Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Howard Coble (R-N.C.)
    Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.)
    Rep. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.)
    Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.)
    Rep. Michael Grimm (N.Y.)
    Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.)
    Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.)
    Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.)
    Rep. Gary Miller (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.)
    Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.)
    Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.)
    Rep. Ed Royce (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Jon Runyan (R-N.J.)
    Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.)
    Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.)
    Rep. David Valadao (R-Calif.)
    Rep. Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.)
    Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.).

  5. 9

    DrJohn

    author

    @Ditto: Let me ask you- what leverage would the GOP have in making any demands of Obama? Why would Obama not just the government close and the GOP once again take the blame? The last time it happened the GOP took a pounding at the polls. I think this was a good move.

  6. 10

    Bill Burris

    @Ditto: As long as the bulk of the media is in the Democrat’s pocket, there is nothing the Republicans can do that will not result in bad publicity; and public opinion is all this administration has to hang its hat on; certainly no positive accomplishments. Until Republicans have a majority in Congress AND the White House, noting is going to happen in Congress but spend, spend, spend.

    Even during the last government shut down, when it was shown not only did a government shut down have NO IMPACT on daily life, the administration was caught red-handed numerous times doing all it could to make life miserable for as many citizens as it could in order to blame it on Republicans for shutting down the government… despite the fact, now, that they were wanting to do what Obama has now, illegally, done. They caught just a tiny bit of hell then, because what they were doing to the veterans trying to visit their Memorial was too out in the open to hide and spin, but still the media has relentlessly blamed the Republicans for the shut down and whatever misery accompanied it. And, that is perception.

    However, without any such games being played on the tilted field, we are left with Obamacare (Benghazi can’t even get any traction because it is in no one’s face like Obamacare is). And Obamacare is the gold standard of failures. It’s worth a few more hundred billions to keep Obamacare front and center. I only hope that was the strategy of these Republicans.

    That’s what I think, anyway.

  7. 11

    MLG

    Well even if it wasn’t on purpose I think this is the first smart thing the Republican party has done in a very long time: never interfere when your adversary is in the process of defeating themselves e.g. Obamacare. I agree with comments concerning the press and media being the Democrat’s 12th man as it were. Until that changes, no matter how good conservative policies maybe concerning cutting spending, no matter how many ideas we bring to the table, no matter how obstructionist and unwilling to negotiate Harry, Nancy and the President are, the Democrats will Successfully blame the Republicans simply because the press & media are in their corner. You play the hand your are dealt; the House and Senate Republicans played this one as well as it could’ve been played. The focus is now back on the Presidents epic legislative failure and overreach.

  8. 12

    Ditto

    @DrJohn & Bill Burris:

    what leverage would the GOP have in making any demands of Obama?

    I’m not sure what your question has to do with my replies, but I think the point is moot. Obama is a staunch devoted ideologue and wont work with Republicans PERIOD. it may still be possible to get workable solutions passed over his intransigence. I think it’s necessary to get as many Republicans in Congress as possible, however Conservatives also need to take control of their party back from the GOP Establishment minority. Conservatives, will support conservatives, and with the damage Obamacare has caused the Democrats, and their lack of a plan to create jobs, All Republicans who focus on campaigning on the issues that really matter to Americans, will have a political advantage. It behooves Conservatives to carefully vett all primary TEA Party candidates to rule out: the false conservatives, the Sharon Angle-esk fools and those with election killing skeletons in their closets.

    The government shut-down was political kabuki theater that was designed to hurt Americans and place the blame on Republicans. If Republicans concentrate on selling solutions to the real concerns of Americans, they can ignore most of the issues that don’t matter to the people. When a leftist reporter tries to ask them about Democrat side-show issues, just ignore or bypass the question and say:

    “Look, we need to get America back to work! (1) We need to fix our failing schools systems and create regulations to lower the costs of higher education, (2) We need to get gas and other energy prices back down to an affordable level. (3) We need to keep more money in Americans pockets instead of continually raising their taxes. (4) We need to solve the nightmarish problems caused by Obamacare with sensible reforms. (5) We need to reduce the massive size and intrusiveness of this big government, which will also lower the costs to maintain it, and gut thousands of counter-productive and heavy-handed laws, as well as the millions of regulations that the multitude of agencies have created without Congressional approval. (6) We need to fight terrorism without invading the privacy of our citizens, and we need to secure our borders to keep terrorists and criminals out. (7) We need to build equal opportunity, not force the equal outcome of socialism. (8) Programs to deal with poverty are simply not working, but are in reality keeping them in a revolving cycle, those programs need to be restudied and reformed in ways that will give them a hand up rather than just a hand out. (9) We need to get rid of government redundancy of multiple agencies that do the same thing, cut over-regulation and red tape that is keeping economic recovery from going forward. (10) As an informed public is necessary for them to make the right decisions, we also need to tell Americans what are in bills BEFORE passing them.”

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