Boehner reportedly tells GOP caucus: Dems will win if the government shuts down

posted at 7:48 pm on April 5, 2011 by Allahpundit

Three possibilities. One: It’s all lies, concocted to weaken Boehner’s hand at a critical moment in negotiations. Two: It’s true, and is being leaked by Boehner’s allies in the caucus to warn the base that they might be steering us off a cliff before Paul Ryan’s epic budget has had a fair shake publicly. Three: It’s true, and is being leaked by Boehner’s opponents in the caucus to warn the base that he’s going wobbly and that they should keep up the pressure for deeper cuts.

“The Democrats think they benefit from a government shutdown. I agree,” Boehner said during a closed-door, 90-minute meeting on House Republicans on Monday night, according to several lawmakers who attended the session.

Boehner’s opinion was quickly backed up GOP lawmakers who were serving in Congress during 1995, when former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) squared off with then President Bill Clinton by shutting down the government twice. Reps. Don Young (Alaska), Dana Rohrbacher (Calif.) and Buck McKeon (Calif.) — a close ally — supported Boehner’s position. Dozens of other Republicans rallied to support Boehner as well, in a moment that one GOP insider called a “turning point” for House Republicans

But while Boehner may have backing from the old veterans in his camp, he’s run headlong into the tea-party group of House Republicans who believe that Obama and Senate Democrats would come off the worse if a shutdown actually takes place…

The split among Republicans breaks somewhat along generational lines, but even more clearly between those who have served in government — either in the state, local or federal level — and those who have never done so.

If there really was a “turning point” in Boehner’s favor last night, why is he suddenly demanding deeper cuts from Reid today? That’s not a move you make if you’re worried about a shutdown and have the support of your caucus in compromising to avert it. On the contrary, the fact that he would up the ante suggests that he’s looking at so many defections if the leadership agrees to only $33 billion in cuts that he might not be able to pass the bill even with significant Democratic support.

When asked why he thinks a shutdown now wouldn’t be a replay of 1995, Mike Pence said, “We have the internet, we have talk radio, we have an infrastructure to get our message out.” All true, and of course the country’s spending is crazed now in a way that it wasn’t 15 years ago. But don’t underestimate how many low-information voters are out there; we’ve already seen one example of that today, in fact, in the poll about New Hampshire Republicans who apparently haven’t gotten the memo yet about RomneyCare. There’s plenty of education available about how entitlements are driving America to fiscal ruin on the Internet and on talk radio and among conservative media infrastructure, but in poll after poll you find an astounding reluctance to reform Medicare and Social Security — even among tea partiers. No matter how good and plentiful your “messaging” is, some voters will inevitably conclude that the shutdown must be the GOP’s fault because, after all, they’re the party that opposes government. Democrats, being the party of government, would never support shutting it down! As crude as that reasoning is, some will adopt it, just as some continue to believe that entitlement spending can be maintained or even increased if we just start cutting stuff like NPR and foreign aid. The only question is how many people like that are out there — especially among independents. How lucky do you feel?

Exit question: If they’re going to risk a shutdown over this year’s budget, should Paul Ryan be the one to try to sell it to the media/public? On the one hand, with all the praise today for the seriousness of his 2012 budget, he’d bring extra credibility to the GOP’s arguments. On the other hand, if Boehner’s right and we end up losing the war for public opinion anyway, Ryan will be seen as the face of a misguided effort and that’ll hurt his credibility on the far more important subject of entitlements. Maybe he should be inoculated from this debate to keep his legitimacy on long-term fiscal reform intact.


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April 1….57% support a shutdown of government if it brings deeper budget cuts

Rndguy on April 5, 2011 at 9:39 PM

As usual, Allahpundit’s uncanny ability to leave one twisting in the wind over who’s reputation will be damaged in the long or short term begs another question: how much do Republican candidates really fear the wrath of the Tea Party? Do Republicans think the strongest national surge in political history was just a fluke? Does Boehner?
Rovin on April 5, 2011 at 8:35 PM

Ah, but now we run into what has become a recurring theme now among Republicans. I’d probably snidely call it “strategy vs. pageantry”, but that might be too mean.

Throughout this whole budget crisis, Boehner and the “establishment” of the GOP have been thinking hard about strategy, working up several small CRs involving spending cuts, forcing the Dems to sign off on them, making them give up ground (when they wanted to cede none), trying to avoid a shutdown now because they know the real fight is going to be later this year, over Paul’s 2012 budget proposal.

While the Tea Party has demanded huge cuts now, and if the Democrats don’t agree, then let them shut the government down, because the public will see the Democrats for the weasels they are, or something. And if Boehner and the other GOP “establishment” don’t agree to that, then they’re “RINOs” and have no principles, etc.

The problem with that is, of course, Republicans don’t have control of the Senate (yet), so whatever the GOP House proposes that has large, substantive cuts in it can easily be shut down, and it is not a sure thing that the Democrats will even get blamed for a shutdown anyway, considering, as Allah pointed out, there’s a rather significant percentage of the populace who is EXTREMELY misinformed or ill-informed about the whole budget / deficit problem to begin with.

Point is, Boehner trying to stop a shutdown now isn’t necessarily a sacrifice of principles, more than it is simply strategy to preserve the fight over the Ryan budget later on.

Vyce on April 5, 2011 at 9:42 PM

Cut it or Shut it.

Pass the budget and tell the Senate not one penny more: if they want to shut down government then, fine, the Democrats can shut it down.

The House need only concern itself with starting the funding process.

Then go home.

Save us some money and only have hearings and such scheduled, with no real business after the budget is passed.

Do or Do Not.

Save your Nation or expect tar, feathers and a rail when you get home.

You folks Upon The Hill volunteered for this job and you are damned well expected to DO IT, or tell us you can’t and we will find a replacement who CAN.

ajacksonian on April 5, 2011 at 9:48 PM

This smells funny.

Kind of like the “deal” with the Democrats that never happened.

gophergirl on April 5, 2011 at 9:52 PM

Point is, Boehner trying to stop a shutdown now isn’t necessarily a sacrifice of principles, more than it is simply strategy to preserve the fight over the Ryan budget later on.

Vyce on April 5, 2011 at 9:42 PM

Not a bad argument, but it’d be stronger if the GOP establishment didn’t have such a history of rolling over and playing dead. What sort of trust can we afford to give them now?

PersonFromPorlock on April 5, 2011 at 10:00 PM

The USA is screwed plain an simple…

http://www.realestateone.com/search/pricehigh_2000/pricelow_0/sc_Listing_Price+DESC/nts_20/

You can buy a $2000 house with 20% down? where do I sign up?

If only 20% down is required I can buy 5 houses in a single pay period. (or one with cash).
One thing never mentioned is the govt is expecting you to pay all taxes owed.

While it is true you can buy property in Detroit, I would not recommend it.

If ace wants to have a block party…I am in for 5 houses.

F15Mech on April 5, 2011 at 10:18 PM

The problem with that is, of course, Republicans don’t have control of the Senate (yet), so whatever the GOP House proposes that has large, substantive cuts in it can easily be shut down, and it is not a sure thing that the Democrats will even get blamed for a shutdown anyway, considering, as Allah pointed out, there’s a rather significant percentage of the populace who is EXTREMELY misinformed or ill-informed about the whole budget / deficit problem to begin with.

So, once again the Republican Party is held hostage by a liberal media that will gladly “enlighten” the “extremely misinformed or ill-informed” with the same lies they’ve told over and over again. But can it be different this time? Ask the ill-informed how they’re loving the price of gas and food these days. Ask the ill-informed if they like the fact that three trillion in spending hasn’t found them a decent job, while their children will be asked to foot the bill. Perhaps the ill-informed could be reminded that it wasn’t that long ago that unemployment was at 4.5% just before the Democrats took over and produced their grand plan that the government would put an end to their ills? How much longer can the media continue to lie to this electorate hungry to put an end to the Democratic Party’s love affair of spending this nation into utter ruin?

Sekhmet’s right: “This ain’t 1995″. The conditions have changed. And just maybe the media can’t shove this garbage down the throats of the ill-informed so easily.

Rovin on April 5, 2011 at 10:27 PM

Also any house will be donated to the FD for practice. as part of “we failed Detroit” opinion.

F15Mech on April 5, 2011 at 10:31 PM

Maybe Boehner should tell the GOP and the rest of the country…

… that the Government really won’t shut down?

Seven Percent Solution on April 5, 2011 at 10:46 PM

The Losership speaks. Uh, does anyone really want to follow them?

Don’t worry, contemplating these common sense observations isn’t contagious… Apparently, at least not to the Losership…

drfredc on April 5, 2011 at 11:04 PM

O/T anyone hear from Tony737?
I have no doubt he is safe and was never in danger, however just checking.

F15Mech on April 5, 2011 at 11:56 PM

I chose Door # 3, Monty…

Gohawgs on April 6, 2011 at 12:08 AM

I’m just waiting for the first “…forcing old people to eat cat/dog food” quote from a Democrat.

That’s when we know that the battle is on.

shorebird on April 6, 2011 at 1:03 AM

The reason that even the tea party is squishy on entitlement reform has nothing to do with information levels and everything to do with my t partying grandparents wanting to stay on the dole. Hell i would oppose cutting off 20-25k a year in checks for myself. This is about generational greed, for some reason seniors think its the youth’s responsibility to finance their leisure

snoopicus on April 6, 2011 at 7:02 AM

We have to do another CR. Its for the children….
snif, snif

james23 on April 6, 2011 at 8:39 AM

Ah, but now we run into what has become a recurring theme now among Republicans. I’d probably snidely call it “strategy vs. pageantry”, but that might be too mean.

Throughout this whole budget crisis, Boehner and the “establishment” of the GOP have been thinking hard about strategy, working up several small CRs involving spending cuts, forcing the Dems to sign off on them, making them give up ground (when they wanted to cede none), trying to avoid a shutdown now because they know the real fight is going to be later this year, over Paul’s 2012 budget proposal.

While the Tea Party has demanded huge cuts now, and if the Democrats don’t agree, then let them shut the government down, because the public will see the Democrats for the weasels they are, or something. And if Boehner and the other GOP “establishment” don’t agree to that, then they’re “RINOs” and have no principles, etc.

The problem with that is, of course, Republicans don’t have control of the Senate (yet), so whatever the GOP House proposes that has large, substantive cuts in it can easily be shut down, and it is not a sure thing that the Democrats will even get blamed for a shutdown anyway, considering, as Allah pointed out, there’s a rather significant percentage of the populace who is EXTREMELY misinformed or ill-informed about the whole budget / deficit problem to begin with.

Point is, Boehner trying to stop a shutdown now isn’t necessarily a sacrifice of principles, more than it is simply strategy to preserve the fight over the Ryan budget later on.

Vyce on April 5, 2011 at 9:42 PM

You’ve got this right.

fossten on April 6, 2011 at 8:47 AM

The reason that even the tea party is squishy on entitlement reform has nothing to do with information levels and everything to do with my t partying grandparents wanting to stay on the dole. Hell i would oppose cutting off 20-25k a year in checks for myself. This is about generational greed, for some reason seniors think its the youth’s responsibility to finance their leisure

snoopicus on April 6, 2011 at 7:02 AM

I disagree. People have paid into SS for decades and wanting a return is not greedy. It’s not their fault they were lied to about what the money was used for.

fossten on April 6, 2011 at 8:48 AM

The Adults are in charge?

kingsjester on April 6, 2011 at 9:02 AM

So question about this actual shutdown…On the rumor mill around the AF base I’m stationed at is that we wont get paid because we fall under govt employees. But has anyone asked if congress themselves will fail to get paid???

cappy718 on April 6, 2011 at 9:08 AM

I disagree. People have paid into SS for decades and wanting a return is not greedy. It’s not their fault they were lied to about what the money was used for.

fossten on April 6, 2011 at 8:48 AM

So what, they will pull out in 2 years more than they ever paid in. Now that they know that do you think the will relinquish one damn dime? No they wont, theyll keep pumping that money into the slots machines at the indian casinos safe in the knowledge they’ll collect about half a million bucks between 65-82 and die before the sh*t hits the fan. They dont give a damn about the future because they wont be there. They only care about their comfort today.

snoopicus on April 6, 2011 at 9:55 AM

I disagree. People have paid into SS for decades and wanting a return is not greedy. It’s not their fault they were lied to about what the money was used for.

fossten on April 6, 2011 at 8:48 AM

regardless of what they were told it would be for, they will not support budget proposals that cuts into their dole. Their dole is more important to them than the country

snoopicus on April 6, 2011 at 9:57 AM

Yeah, stop paying the troops.

What an awesome idea.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 10:31 AM

Cut it and let the socialists shut it down.

dogsoldier on April 6, 2011 at 11:49 AM

Bonehead is a defeatist! Move over and let someone else be the leader!!!

grapeknutz on April 6, 2011 at 11:55 AM

Yeah, stop paying the troops.

What an awesome idea.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 10:31 AM

What a moron you are Rywall. My hubby was active duty in 1995. We NEVER missed a paycheck – nor was one delayed.

SuzyQAZ on April 6, 2011 at 12:00 PM

What a moron you are Rywall. My hubby was active duty in 1995. We NEVER missed a paycheck – nor was one delayed.

SuzyQAZ on April 6, 2011 at 12:00 PM
——-
I invite you to stop evaluating how the troops will most certainly not be paid on time in April of 2011 based on your husband’s payroll experience in 1995 so you don’t look like – what was the term you used – moron.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 12:19 PM

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 12:19 PM

And you know this how? Oh that’s right, you’re basing your ridiculous assertions on what Canada might do. Troops are considered “essential” and will not lose pay.

SuzyQAZ on April 6, 2011 at 12:51 PM

And you know this how? Oh that’s right, you’re basing your ridiculous assertions on what Canada might do. Troops are considered “essential” and will not lose pay.

SuzyQAZ on April 6, 2011 at 12:51 PM
—–
I did not say lose pay.

I said troops in harm’s way around the world will not get paid on time.

I heard there was this thing called the “news” and you could click on things and read this “news”. I invite you to get your head out of your a*s and do that.

For example, if you go to this new site called “google” you can type in “troops not paid” into the box for news and you will get 1690 hits to stories about the inevitable delay in paying the soldiers. You know, the ones risking their lives so you can spend your life not paying attention.

bye bye now

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Three scenarios …

1. We shut the government down and actually hit a home run and convince Americans that cutting is the right thing to do – and the Democrats end up caving to the $61B in cuts or some other deep compromise. This would be the WIN for us – with nothing but good things ahead of us.

2. We shut the government down and LOSE – and end up coming back to grovel to Obama to accept his paltry cuts. I don’t consider this a loss – the GOP will have demonstrated it’s courage to the base, and to Americans – who sooner or later are going to have to realize the government needs to be cut. We don’t have the Senate – and we can’t override Ogabe’s VETO – a loss is not disgraceful … failing to TRY would be.

3. We cave now – and show the base, and Americans – that we’re all talk and no action and that the guys with the real balls are the Democrats like Wasserman-Schultz. You cave into only $33B in cuts with no riders – and you have NO HOPE in passing anything significant in Paul Ryan’s plan. No hope.

Did I miss a possibility here? I don’t think so. We only lose if we don’t fight. I think Americans – and the base – can understand losing a fight when we’re outnumbered – and with the Dims in charge of 1600 and the Senate – we ARE outnumbered. But we have to fight this battle.

On another note – I was just informed that I’m considered “essential” personnel in my job, and I was directed to come in and work during the shutdown anyway, without pay. However, we all know the drill – and Congress will retroactively make it “good”. I’m good with that. I was actually looking forward to an unpaid vacation but … oh well!

I think the choice of Boehner as SotH – was not a good one. He is not prepared to go where the new GOP needs to go.

HondaV65 on April 6, 2011 at 1:50 PM

You know, the ones risking their lives so you can spend your life not paying attention.

bye bye now

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Have you ever been one of those troops?

I have Drywall … you have no right to speak of them – half of them would spit on your opinions. We fought to preserve this nation … but our role was to fight enemies of the US who wished to destroy it.

I can tell you – without any hesitation – and you cannot dispute this – that 80 % of those troops – which you care little for except for making a political point – WANT someone to fight another enemy of the United States …

An enemy they can’t fight.

The growing national debt. The troops realize that THIS ENEMY – is just as dangerous as any Islamo-fascist one. The problem is – they’re frustrated that they can’t turn their weapons on this enemy and kill it … THAT is for politicians to do.

And the troops are hoping – that there are lawmakers with the balls to do what is right – to save this nation for our kids (their kids).

So you can cry your crocodile tears till you’re blue in the face. You don’t care for those troops – you have no idea of what sacrifices they make – and you don’t support the mission they are executing right now – DO YOU?

If I were you – I’d STFU – but I don’t expect an honorless POS like you ever will.

HondaV65 on April 6, 2011 at 1:56 PM

Have you ever been one of those troops?

I have Drywall … you have no right to speak of them – half of them would spit on your opinions. We fought to preserve this nation … but our role was to fight enemies of the US who wished to destroy it.

I can tell you – without any hesitation – and you cannot dispute this – that 80 % of those troops – which you care little for except for making a political point – WANT someone to fight another enemy of the United States …

An enemy they can’t fight.

The growing national debt. The troops realize that THIS ENEMY – is just as dangerous as any Islamo-fascist one. The problem is – they’re frustrated that they can’t turn their weapons on this enemy and kill it … THAT is for politicians to do.

And the troops are hoping – that there are lawmakers with the balls to do what is right – to save this nation for our kids (their kids).

So you can cry your crocodile tears till you’re blue in the face. You don’t care for those troops – you have no idea of what sacrifices they make – and you don’t support the mission they are executing right now – DO YOU?

If I were you – I’d STFU – but I don’t expect an honorless POS like you ever will.

HondaV65 on April 6, 2011 at 1:56 PM
———

So much typing. Bravo.

The troops will be paid late.

That is acceptable to you.

If people earning over 500 grand made a tiny sacrifice and paid 5% more income taxes you would be galaxies further along to getting out of this quagmire, instead of wetting your pants over defunding NPR out of a million dollars.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 2:36 PM

If people earning over 500 grand made a tiny sacrifice and paid 5% more income taxes you would be galaxies further along to getting out of this quagmire, instead of wetting your pants over defunding NPR out of a million dollars.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 2:36 PM

You could tax everyone making $500K at 100% and it would fund about 2 weeks of current govt spending.

Once again, an epic fail.

angryed on April 6, 2011 at 4:25 PM

If people earning over 500 grand made a tiny sacrifice and paid 5% more income taxes you would be galaxies further along to getting out of this quagmire, instead of wetting your pants over defunding NPR out of a million dollars.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 2:36 PM

And you don’t even mean an extra 5%. You mean an extra 5% as in, instead of paying 35%, paying 39.6%. It’s not an extra 5% you imbecile. It is an extra 13% in taxes. But that is SOP for a liberal when it comes to talking about math…completely clueless.

Epic Fail.

angryed on April 6, 2011 at 4:26 PM

if they can’t figure out how to find a middle in their figures than they all need to take basic math again. The voters in this country are still 45-45 and all I want is for both parties to find middle ground … and keep the government open.

Monkei on April 6, 2011 at 4:34 PM

And you don’t even mean an extra 5%. You mean an extra 5% as in, instead of paying 35%, paying 39.6%. It’s not an extra 5% you imbecile. It is an extra 13% in taxes. But that is SOP for a liberal when it comes to talking about math…completely clueless.

Epic Fail.

angryed on April 6, 2011 at 4:26 PM
——

I said 5% more than what they’re paying now.

That confuses you.

That’s okay, little girl.

Dave Rywall on April 6, 2011 at 9:22 PM

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