If the let-the-cuts-happen approach on the sequester seems risky — especially with President Barack Obama blaming Republicans for everything from kids not getting vaccines to long lines at the airport — the alternative for Boehner is worse.
Jump-start negotiations with Obama, and he would be slammed for engaging in out-of-sight, secret talks with a president his party doesn’t trust. Raise taxes, and Boehner’s courting trouble in his conference and endangering his speakership. Both are simply nonstarters.
Unlike previous fiscal fights, House Republicans feel like they are in a good political position on this one.
They passed a bill last Congress that replaced the sequester cuts, and are considering another bill in the coming weeks that would do the same. They are standing firm against more tax increases — all poll-tested positions.