Both Cantor and McCarthy benefit from not having to take full responsibility for the legislative brawls of the upcoming 113th Congress.

And Ryan, who is presumed to be eyeing a run for the White House in 2016, can hardly afford to have his brand tarnished by leading a gang of House Republicans with single-digit approval ratings.

Then there’s this problem: no one has said how they’d handle the brawls with Obama differently. Leading conservatives considered the most likely to vote against Boehner didn’t respond to requests for comment.

“There’s no ‘better plan’ to get the House GOP out of this mess, i.e., ‘If I were speaker, I would do ‘X’ as an alternative,’” explained one House Republican.

A GOP aide echoed that: “[N]o outsider, were there even a path for them – which there isn’t – has any interest in doing this dirty work. They don’t want to have to meet with the president, work with Harry Reid, or even Mitch McConnell. They want to stay pure, and the only way to do that is to shout from bleachers.”