John Boehner is out. Is it fight time on Capitol Hill?

John Boehner: Gaveling out. (AP Photo / Pablo Martinez Monsivais )

John Boehner: Gaveling out. (AP Photo / Pablo Martinez Monsivais )

Whoa … from the Washington Post:

“House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), faced with a constant conservative rebellion, told Republicans Friday morning that he will resign at the end of October, according to aides and lawmakers in a closed-door meeting.

“The resignation will end a nearly five-year reign as speaker, allowing House Republicans to approve a short-term government funding bill that will avert a shutdown of federal agencies. Boehner’s hold on the speaker’s gavel had grown increasingly unsteady amid threats from more than 30 Republicans that they would force a no-confidence vote in his speaker’s position, which would have forced him to rely on Democratic votes in order to remain in charge.

“The shocking move means there’s unlikely to be a government shutdown next week. Following Boehner’s announcement, House Republicans said there was agreement to pass a clean spending bill to avert a government shutdown. Several members of the Freedom Caucus, the conservative group which led the revolt against Boehner’s leadership, said they will now support the spending bill without demands to defund Planned Parenthood attached to it.”

There had been rumblings of a challenge to Boehner, but we’ve heard those before. For him to step down now comes as a huge surprise.

It is telling that this decision came as a way to avert a shutdown. Not so much that a shutdown over the spending bill was in the offing, but that Boehner’s scalp would be enough to satisfy those who were prepared to either block that bill if it included Planned Parenthood funding.

Let me say from the start that if Congress were to pass a spending bill, and President Obama were to veto it solely because it stripped funding from Planned Parenthood, the shutdown would be his fault. Period. You cannot say that Congress has the power of the purse on the one hand, and then blame Congress for exercising that power. If Congress passes a spending bill with every function of government funded and Obama vetoes it because it didn’t fund one thing he wanted, he’s the one being the ideologue. He can ask Congress to fund something, but if he insists on it to the point of delaying the funding of everything else, that’s on him.

Not that I would expect it to be cast that way. It is easy to project that congressional Republicans would have gotten the blame from much of the news media. And more often than not, it seems, that kind of calculation has been at the bottom line of Boehner’s decision-making. Maybe he was wrong, and the public would have seen through cries about obstructionist, anti-woman, ideological Republicans and understood Obama was the one keeping their Social Security checks from arriving and their parks from being open. Some folks on the right have argued that the shutdown of 2013 didn’t hurt Republicans, because they took control of the Senate the following year. Maybe they’re right — or maybe the GOP got off easy because that shutdown coincided with the disastrous roll-out of the Obamacare exchange website, and Democrats simply took the brunt of that combined episode.

Either way, Boehner clearly didn’t think this was a fight Republicans could win. A number of prominent conservatives wanted the fight anyway. I note that some of the same people mock those who say they support Donald Trump because “he fights.”

Now we will see just how influential some of these voices, in and out of Congress, really are. If the next speaker doesn’t govern much differently, will they decide maybe they were wrong to heap so much blame on Boehner personally? Will they try to replace the replacement? Could they end up realizing their problem is they don’t have the votes to back up their rhetoric?

The choice of the next speaker could have a very interesting angle locally. As my colleague Greg Bluestein has already noted, Georgia’s Tom Price will be part of the speculation, at least, as he’s positioned himself well over the past several years to make a jump in the leadership ranks. That could also mean a big move up to the majority leader position.

(Note: The only thing John Boehner’s ever done to me was make this announcement on what was supposed to be a day off. Obviously, since I took the time to post this, I’ll also check every now and then to approve comments. But I won’t be able to sit by the keyboard all day. Thanks in advance for your patience.)

Reader Comments 0

82 comments
Laurie1113
Laurie1113

May the most sexist and racist GOPer win.  Let's see those true colors shine,

Dusty2
Dusty2

Bump the Trump!  Jeb Bush!  The best!

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

Many of our leftists would argue that Boehner's gone because he's orange, smokes, or is a drunk.

How shallow can our leftists be?

Very! 

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

Wow - the mob cheering in the right wing caucus sounded a lot like a lynch mob.  These are salivating red meat eaters on all fours who feel most at home howling at the moon.  Should be a good night for them tonight.  Should provide some good laughs for the intelligentsia. 

lvg
lvg

I guess Boehner decided after listening to the Pope that the omly way he was going to make it to heaven was to resign and stop leading the crazies and do-nothings. The inmates now have the keys to the asylum. Let Ted Cruz and Heritage Action folks and other far right monitoring groups  pick the next speaker so we get to see how insane theGOP really is.

graphite
graphite

The Watters World segment on the Factor sums this country up. These idiots vote for the likes of obummer and Reid.

Ficklefan
Ficklefan

Here's the deal. The facts don' matter. The viable babies cut for parts don't matter (at least they don't any more in this country). The right to deliver them alive, kill them, and sell them for part is CRITICAL for women's health now in America. It is Dem/lLib doctrine and the increasingly crude, coarse, vile, uncivil, corrupt,  selfish, and self centered American public could care less. If the Nazis had had the corrupted and blind, immoral, and ignorant support like the Dem/Libs have for abortion rights (or "women's health" as we are told) we would all be speaking German now. 


I am not anti-abortion. I think there are instances when it is justified. Conflict with the delivery date and with the upcoming European vacation is not one of them. But for what is coming, or already here, that reason, or any reason one might imagine is not enough. The circumstances do not matter. The chain of events does not matter. The irresponsibilty does not matter (like uh, like uh birth control is such an inconvenience.  It like uhh, like it uhh, you know, ruins the spontaneity . . . like, uh, you know. 


What poor Boehner realized, and what many Republicans may soon realize teh hard way, is this. Government shut downs cost votes. And government shut downs, regardless of the reason, regardless of how they are being created, managed and orchestrated by Obama, by the Dems in the Senate and in the House are ALWAYS . . . . are you listening here? . . . they are ALWAYS . . . they have ALWAYS have been, are now, and forever will be the fault of the Republicans. You got that.  Regardless of any other factor you can come up with, it is like E=MC2. Government Shut Down = Republicans. 


Yeah, yeah, yeah . . . . blah, blah, blah . . . the facts, the circumstances, the Dem cynicism, the smugness . . . they don't matter. We don't need no stinking facts. It is, has always been, and will always be the Republicans'  fault when government shuts down. And now, Ted Cruz, who will never, ever, never, ever ever be President  . . . ever . . .i and his "principled" pals are going to make it happen again, and just before a presidential election year. Hillary cannot believe her luck. 

LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

"In the long run, the last year of turmoil in the GOP will prove to have been immensely positive. You had a Speaker who decided he was going to ignore the decentralizing influence of digital communication and try to govern with an iron fist ignoring the will of his voters. And that model has proven to be a complete failure.

"No one should need an army of lawyers, lobbyists and accountants to succeed in this great nation. We have a chance to take back America, but it will require the Republican Party to fight for all Americans, not the powerful and well-connected.

http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/09/boehner-betrayed-his-party-213191#ixzz3mnnYkqQg

LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

Be proud of your baby butcher shops, Dems.  And send them a nice donation, why don't you, instead of forcing people who work for a living to pay for things that are morally repugnant to all but the reptilian left.

missgrace
missgrace

Can't wait to see the childish foot tantrum throwing conservatives provide their " leadership " to the GOP and see how far they get.

M H Smith
M H Smith

Thank you Speaker Boehner for all you done in service to the country and for all the good you tried to do while being ridiculed, scorned, even betrayed by those you trusted. 

God bless you Sir

sssinff
sssinff

@AlwaysReady


I was a middle school teacher for 5 years. Trump reminds me of a dramatic 12 year old girl, so concerned with what others think of him that he can't do anything else. Instead of learning/discussing policy, he spends his days and nights fighting with people on social media. How are those skills transferable to the presidency? Will he hash out disagreements with world leaders via twitter?

SouthernHope5
SouthernHope5

here's the thing...Planned Parenthood isn't funded out of the spending bill....so what are they blocking? There's no connection between the funding of that organization and the bill that will be on Obama's desk.  


it's no wonder that Boehner just literally couldn't take it anymore. 

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

Glad you blaming our President! Be patient, wait for the real story to come out!

LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@SouthernHope5

Nonsense.  The money has to be appropriated (unless Obama's doing that on his own now).  Just add one sentence to the appropriations bill.  "No money shall be spent at Planned Parenthood" or fancy words to that effect.

Jefferson1776
Jefferson1776

Reasonable people can come to reasonable conclusions under reasonable conditions, unless you are a republican.

'Don''t Tread'
'Don''t Tread'

Boehner has stabbed conservatives in the back too many times.  It was past time for him to go.


The whole point of electing Republican majorities in Congress was to stop the liberal bullet-train to fascism instead of accommodating it in the name of "compromise".

sssinff
sssinff

@'Don''t Tread'


Our country's leadership isn't conservative enough. That's why the GOP have lost the popular vote in 5 of the last 6 presidential elections and require heavily gerrymandered districts and low voter participation to control the House and Senate (2014 saw the lowest voter participation in 70 years and in 2012 the GOP kept the House despite receiving 3 million less votes for House candidates than the Dems). 


Well, your logic is interesting....

RaceTraitor
RaceTraitor

@'Don''t Tread' Ummm....if you don't actually know what "fascism" means, you probably shouldn't go throwing it around.  Do a little studying and then get back to us.

JeffreyEav
JeffreyEav

So Planned Parenthood was sacrificed to sacrifice Boehner? The hits just keep coming.

Good column Kyle. Hope your day off and weekend are good.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

"It's all the fault of radical Republicans", yet the reality is there is really NOTHING radical about the Republican base in a political sense, "radical" is the leftist-progressive agenda that is being rammed down our throats. It's LONG past time for elected officials to be accountable to the people that put them there. If Boehner doesn't believe that then he is doing the right thing getting out of the way.

TheRealJDW
TheRealJDW

@DawgDadII


O' no...no radicals here....


-Lets round up 11 million people....perfectly sane...not

-3 guns in every house...perfectly sane...not

-Us men over here have decided to tell you women over there how you handle your body..perfectly sane..not

-A government budget is just like my household one...o boy can't even pretend that is sane

-Problem with all "those people" is they just don't want to work..reality check aisle four

-That global warming stuff all them there scientist fellows believe in...why just hogwash...darn its hot pass the lemonade

-Hey lets take over Iraq...solve all our problems...they love us over there and will throw flowers at our feet


I could go on but I need to go down and get an new picture id to go along with my 30 year history of citizenship so I can vote for whichever unlimited fund raising PAC gets the most of my attention. 

mackdenny
mackdenny

@TheRealJDW @DawgDadII Wow, just wow, it is so fun to listen to what liberals believe.  Why it's like they have absolutely NO common sense.  I guess that only reading The Huff Post and watching MSNBC does that to you...

ChuckinAlpharetta
ChuckinAlpharetta

@DawgDadII


Sorry, when the Pope has now joined the shunned ranks of radical lefty communists, the GOP has some serious reflection to do.

cc423
cc423

The Republican Party is cannibalizing itself.

Caius
Caius

The argument that a shutdown over planned parenthood funding wold be blamed on the president might sell to the choir, but that is it.  And the argument that the 2013 shutdown did not hurt Republicans fails to note that the 2014 election was an off year election.  2016 is the presidential election with the resulting massive turnout of voters.

The Constitution, Article I, Sections 7 and 8 - Congress has the duty to raise $$ and fund the government in a bill that the President will sign; or have enough votes to override a veto.  There is no other option. As Trump says, or will eventually say if he has not already, "Congress is a bunch of cowards!".


The only problem I had with Boehner was his insistence on keeping the Hastert Rule.  The next Speaker, (McCarthy?) needs to dump that dumb rule and regain control of his caucus.


LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@Caius

Republicans should pass the omnibus with everything but money for baby butcher shops.  If Obama vetoes the entire budget because of one special interest group, the next bill should arrive on his desk minus money for baby butcher shops and some other leftist sacred cow.  Repeat until Obama gets tired of losing money for his leftist pals and their anti-American schemes.

MarkVV
MarkVV

Kyle “Let me say from the start that if Congress were to pass a spending bill, and President Obama were to veto it solely because it stripped funding from Planned Parenthood, the shutdown would be his fault. Period.”

The above should be understood as “I personally would blame President Obama …” Certainly it is not an objective judgment of fault.

Kyle: “You cannot say that Congress has the power of the purse on the one hand, and then blame Congress for exercising that power.”

Sure we can. What a peculiar idea – that we cannot blame Congress for taking an action we do not like just because theirs is an exercise of their power. The argument that it is Congress that has constitutionally the “the power of purse” is quite disingenuous. By the same token the President has the constitutional power of the veto.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

The only thing John Boehner’s ever done to me was make this announcement on what was supposed to be a day off.


I figured you had a Boehner resigns article filed away ready to go.


Seriously though I don't think anyone saw this coming. 

lvg
lvg

@Hedley_Lammar Not even when he told a  GOP group in Colorado in August that he was tired of getting orders "from that jacka-s Cruz"???????????

STColeman
STColeman

Sorry Kyle, but your premise that it would be President Obama's fault if the government is shut down due to his veto of a spending bill that would nix funding of PP does not hold water. 


According to your misplaced logic on this issue, and that of the Republicans who support de-funding PP, the words/actions of a handful of PP administrators is reason enough to pull the federal funding plug on an entire program that provides women's health care services for hundreds of thousands of women throughout the country, mostly in ex-urban and rural areas. 


So, using your misplaced logic, why is there no push to withhold all federal funds earmarked for state and local law enforcement entities across the board? After all, haven't a handful of cops been caught doing everything from unlawfully arresting a woman (Sandra Bland) who later died while spending days in jail for a minor traffic violation (Brian Encinia, TX), to demanding sex from women they have stopped (Anthony Arevalos, San Diego; Bryan Lee, Ohio Trooper), to firing their service weapon after their sexual advances were rebuffed (Kenneth Sheka, Temple, TX), to flat out murdering a non-lethal suspect by shooting him in the back as he fled, then attempting to plant incriminating evidence near the suspect's lifeless body (Michael Slager, Charleston, SC)? Are these not despicable acts? So why not withhold their funding?


Because it wouldn't make sense, that's why. It's attempting to kill an ant with a AK-47. The Republican's use of those doctored videos as a rationale for de-funding PP is a weakly veiled attempt to poke another hole in  a woman's right to choose and Roe v. Wade. Nothing more, nothing less.


Getting_Older
Getting_Older

@STColeman He (Kyle) didn't say it would be right or wrong to defund Planned Parenthood.  He only said that if the President vetoed the spending bill, it would be the President who shut down the government.  To say otherwise, would be like the Republicans not passing one, and blaming the President, saying they knew he was going to veto it anyway, so it was his fault.  Kyle was correct, but not that it really matters.  

I hate this 100% partisan political world that exists now days.  Democrats think all Republicans are evil and 100% wrong on every issue, with the Republicans feeling the exact same way towards the Democrats.  Might it just be possible that one group is right on some issues and the other side right on some others?  If one side said the sky was blue, the other side would argue about it.  Can't people worry about what is actually good for the country first?  Both sides are guilty.

DMayr
DMayr

Puritanical zealots who represent a minority faction in the minority party are once again claiming victory. In the meantime, pls help remind us: exactly what will the new leader be able to accomplish that Boehner couldn't? Will he use his newly acquired magic wand to change the rules in the Senate? Will he gerrymander the entire US map so only GOP candidates represent the entire country? Or is this just the longest, most painful route to 'more of the same b/s' from the Party of No?


Thanks God Kyle cleared up the whole 'adults in the room' business earlier. I'd hate to think we'll waste more time and resources on ideological grandstanding, showboat floor votes that go nowhere, and complaints about Obamacare.

ChuckinAlpharetta
ChuckinAlpharetta

@DMayr


Because when you can blame Obama for anything, including GOP infighting, there's nothing you can accomplish.

Dusty2
Dusty2

I thought it was always fight time on Capitol Hill.  Boehner just got tired of the whole mess there. Who could blame him?.  This administration has turned everything from healthcare to making our enemies our so called friends. Iran comes to mind.  Congress has been kicked around like an old football.  The president thinks he has the last word on everything .  That is called dictatorial. 


The sad thing is having good men leave Washington to the weak, the unconstitutional, the faithless and the thoughtless.


Citizens feel concerned as they watch the flight from Washington by the patriotic and sensible politicians they have elected. They are proud of this country and wonder why that pride  doesn't seem to reach those supposedly in charge.   

MarkVV
MarkVV

@Dusty2 “This administration has turned everything from healthcare to making our enemies our so called friends. Iran comes to mind.”

If Iran comes to somebody’s mind as an example of enemies being made our so called friends, it is a very sick mind indeed. Would you care to quote any member of the administration who has called Iran our friend?  It is this outrageous lying that makes people who do it so contemptible.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

Well, we eventually are going to get a new point guard for the Washington GOP Generals, but they are going to have to void their contract that requires them to lose every game they engage in with the Harlem Globetrotting Socialists, or the new point guard will be just more play fight frosting on the cake.  (Kudo's to Ann Coulter)


Until the GOP decides that to beat someone who is relentless in the pursuit of his socialistic ideology,  you have to be more relentless than he is, or this is just for naught.  


Obama has lost the House and the Senate and been rebuked by the voters severely in 2010 and 2014 and never once said, well maybe I should compromise a little more.   Clinton backed up some when the voters sent him a message, Bush backed up when the voters nixed his immigration ploy, but Obama has never weakened, only gotten more verbose.  The GOP surrenders at the fist sight of blood.  


LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@MarkVV @RafeHollister

Real Americans are well aware that the 47-percenter Democrats show up in larger numbers in presidential elections.  It's their one best chance to keep the free stuff coming, and make sure those work requirements don't get reinstated.

OBAMAPHONE!!

JFMcNamara
JFMcNamara

The problem is the polls. Congress is elected to represent the majority. The majority (73%) want to keep it funded. Republicans were going to lose and be seen as extreme. You don't win the Presidency when the majority is angry at you.

Jefferson1776
Jefferson1776

The fault lies with the radical republicans, who have proven again that they cannot govern. They are tearing the country apart. 

ATLJacket
ATLJacket

It boggles the mind that the R's in the house will now pass a clean funding bill. Were they just using that threat to push Boehner off the cliff? Seems unlikely but that's what Kyle is stating here. I'm going elsewhere for another source.

Jimmyliscious
Jimmyliscious

The best thing about this is it will mean more gridlock for Hillary when she's inaugurated. I'm sure she's real pleasant when she doesn't get what she wants.

Dusty2
Dusty2

@Jimmyliscious


Hillary won't have a problem in Washington.  She won't be there.  

Juanx
Juanx

" Let me say from the start that if Congress were to pass a spending bill, and President Obama were to veto it solely because it stripped funding from Planned Parenthood, the shutdown would be his fault. Period."


Because the " Conservative Purist" wanted Boehner's head, this group had a video created to make false statements and pictures on Planned Parenthood practices? These tactics will not make them leaders of the GOP. It makes the GOP Tea Party Terrorists. Americans are being targeted for the implementation of all this group advocate...war with Iran, Repeal of Roe Versus Wade, Repeal ACA/Social Security/Medicare, Close down EPA, IRS, CBO, Dept. of ED. deport all Latinos, introduce laws for States Rights, and other inhuman laws.

Jefferson1776
Jefferson1776

@Juanx Hypothetical questions, deserve off the wall answers.  No results,  why would anyone vote for the GOP.