Benen and Drum both link to this Robert Costa fellow at NRO on occasion, so apparently he’s like a Dr. Dolittle who can figure out what the Tea Party animals are going to allow John Boehner to do. His latest take is that that Boehner is going to be allowed to pass a continuing resolution that funds the government and defunds Obamacare:
Here’s how my sources expect the gambit to unfold: The House passes a “defund CR,” throws it to the Senate, and waits to see what Senator Ted Cruz and his allies can do. Maybe they can get it through, maybe they can’t. Boehner and Cantor will be supportive, and conservative activists will rally.
But if Cruz and company can’t round up the votes, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid rejects the legislation, the House leadership will likely ask Republicans to turn their focus to the debt limit, avert a shutdown, and pass a revised CR — a stopgap spending bill that doesn’t defund Obamacare.
Love that “if” in the second paragraph–have two letters ever done heavier lifting? Anyway, back here on planet Earth, once this thing arrives stillborn on the floor of the Senate, we know that there are between 49-87 Republicans who will join in with Democrats and vote on something sane. The question is whether this vote will happen before or after a government shutdown. The Noam Scheiber piece that DougJ mentioned yesterday says that this vote will occur after a shutdown and he’s probably right.
One of these days, Boehner is going to let something come to the floor and pass that will alienate a majority of his crazy caucus. At that point, they will want to elect another speaker. Who could do a better job than Boehner with that animal farm? My guess is nobody. The problem in the House isn’t the player, it’s the game, and the game, at least in public, is defunding Obamacare, keeping every sperm sacred, and hating poors, browns and gays. If that’s your agenda, your Speaker is going to be weak, no matter who he is.