The failure last night to pass the so-called Boehner bill was a mistake. I hope it will be corrected today.
I don’t disparage the intentions of the 25 or so who were not willing to vote for the bill. In fact, I agree with them as to where we should end up. I disagree with them as to how to get there.
My disagreement is that they are treating this vote as the end of the line, the last chance to save this sinking ship.
That’s not my perspective. This is an opportunity to change direction of the ship, and spend the next year fighting for the types of deeper changes which will save the ship.
The Boehner bill establishes the principles of no new taxes, dollar-for-dollar offsets of debt and budget cuts, capping the growth of government, and the necessity of further cuts. The Boehner bill also establishes this agenda as the agenda for the presidential election by making sure that more hard decisions are made during the electoral season.
There is uncertainty as to what no debt ceiling raise means. Frankly, I don’t know whether it will be no big deal or catastrophe. But I am confident that regardless, it plays into Obama’s hands.
The lack of job growth, the failure of a recovery to materialize, any further economic damage, and so on, will be placed on our doorstep, however unfairly. The narrative for the presidential election will be changed dramatically, and not in a way that helps us rid ourselves of a president who is deeply committed to the expansion of government by regulation if not legislation.
Passing the Boehner bill out of the House, to near certain rejection by the Senate and Obama, puts the onus for any negative consequences where it belongs, on the Democrats. But only if Republicans pass it out of the House.
Update: I should also add that some of the monied Tea Party organizations, which only to a limited extent represent the “movement,” have lost their way when they announce that they will target Allen West over his decision to vote for the Boehner bill. Allen West?