"It is American families who pay the real price of [the House GOP radicals'] extreme policies" (CAP Action War Room)
Mike Keefe (click to enlarge)
"The party's leadership gave in to a minority of its members who are devoted to pushing devastating cuts to working- and middle-class families in pursuit of rigid and impractical ideological principles. The result has been a government in a state of perpetual dysfunction. And while House Republicans may be paying the price with negative news coverage, it is American families who pay the real price of their extreme policies."
-- the CAP Action War Room, in the
ThinkProgress post "Banana Republicans"
ThinkProgress post "Banana Republicans"
Let me just say a couple of things about the current House speakership follies before more or less turning the floor over to the CAP Action War Room.
(1) A singularly insightful take today on Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!: that the House speakership has now become one of those jobs that no American wants to do, and therefore will presumably have to be filled by an undocumented immigrant.
(2) Then, there's the comical take of the cards in the House "Freedom" Caucusites: that the problem with the previous House GOP leadership, and what they plan to make sure doesn't happen with its successor, is that it isn't democratic. This was said even as the "Freedom" militia was requiring candidates for the speakership to fill out a lengthy questionaire in which they were asked to pledge support for a laundry list of the miltia's most radical positions, all aimed at bringing the country closer to the shithole lodged in their heads. In other words, under this cabal, no House speaker could be elected without pledging support for the agenda of 40 rampaging mental defectives.
Ah, it's a lovely thing, "democracy" as imagined by a cabal of crackpots, thugs, and economic predators.
IN FAIRNESS TO THE CRACKPOTS, THUGS,
AND ECONOMIC PREDATORS: A QUESTION
If we on the Left were ever able to bring to bear the political diligence -- and muscle -- to elect 40 House members willing to go the mat for the basics of our political agenda, would we not cheer them on if they played this kind of we're-not-kidding hardball with the Democratic Party leadership? (Would the other side not be denouncing us as "extremists" and "radicals"?)
"THE LATEST HOUSE GOP MELTDOWN HAS BEEN A
LONG TIME COMING, AND IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT THEM"
This is the proposition advanced in the post I alluded to earlier from the CAP Action War Room, called "Banana Republicans." In the introductory portion, the post notes:
The media frenzy surrounding these events has focused on intrigue like it is an episode of House of Cards." Was there something behind why McCarthy took himself out of the running? Will Paul Ryan step up and run for speaker despite repeatedly pledging not to?"But," the post continues (with lots of links onsite),
here’s what is much more important: this self-inflicted leadership breakdown is just one more chapter in a story of House Republican recklessness – and their own caucus hasn’t been the only victim. House GOP dysfunction has resulted in a string of harmful policies and American families have paid the price.The post proceeds to offer "just a few examples":
• The GOP orchestrated the reckless government shutdown in 2013 which had a devastating impact on our economy. Republican leaders bowed to the will of their extreme right wing to shut down the government over the Affordable Care Act. The shutdown lost Americans at least 120,000 jobs, prevented sick Americans from enrolling in clinical trials, forced Head Start programs for children to shut down, stalled veterans’ disability claims, delayed $4 billion in tax returns for Americans, and severely hurt small businesses. Overall, S&P estimates that the Republicans cost the United States economy a whopping $24 billion with their shutdown.
• The GOP has repeatedly used the debt ceiling to manufacture crises. In order to maintain the full faith and credit of the United States and avoid global economic collapse, Congress needs to raise the debt ceiling from time to time. Yet, GOP leaders have repeatedly joined with their unyielding Tea Party caucus to manipulate these once run-of-the-mill debt ceiling increases for their own gain. In 2011, the GOP threatened to force the United States into a default – to “crash the global economy,” as Time put it – which was only averted after both sides agreed to $1.2 trillion in economically damaging sequestration cuts. This behavior led to a U.S. credit rating downgrade. In 2013, the GOP used this brinksmanship again to attempt to make cuts to programs like Social Security, Medicare, and the SNAP food program, again putting the credit-worthiness of the United States in jeopardy.
• The GOP also used a manufactured crisis to force sequestration cuts that are still hurting the economy today. The Republican-induced sequester disproportionately hurt low-income and middle class families. It led to significant cuts to funding for education, small business, and health research. Sequestration overall will cause approximately 1.8 million people to lose their jobs.
"CLEARLY, THE GOP'S INABILITY TO CONTROL THEIR
OWN PARTY HAS ALREADY CAUSED A LOT OF DAMAGE"
That's damage, the post continues, "to our economy and the well-being of American taxpayers. "
And yet, as their conference devolves again into chaos, they have no inclination to change their backwards policies or irresponsible behavior. They have no plans to avert the upcoming shutdown or increase the debt ceiling, even though the United States could default on its obligations if Congress doesn’t act by November 5th. House Republicans are not only distracted by their internal pandemonium, going into the upcoming budget negotiations they remain committed to the backwards, policy ideas and reckless political strategy that have caused so many problems for themselves, but more importantly for the American people.Yes, I think that about sums it up.
BOTTOM LINE: The GOP’s current state of disarray has been a long time coming. The party’s leadership gave in to a minority of its members who are devoted to pushing devastating cuts to working- and middle-class families in pursuit of rigid and impractical ideological principles. The result has been a government in a state of perpetual dysfunction. And while House Republicans may be paying the price with negative news coverage, it is American families who pay the real price of their extreme policies.