Until a new president is elected, the dynamics of DC remain the dynamics because of structure, not personalities. The Treasury Department says Congress has to raise the debt ceiling by Nov. 5. Congress will agree to bump it again. Congress has to reach a two-year budget deal before funding expires. Republicans will agree, because they will not want to close down government. And conservatives will be mad.
Long-term implications, though, may be different. Certain things can and should get done.
Sooner or later, though, after someone else takes over, that new leadership will strive to maintain intraparty stability and demand disciple. That’s its job. And a bunch of newcomers will show up and want to change things, as they always do. In 1994, there was a Republican revolution in the House. By 1998, there was another House rebellion, this one overthrowing Newt Gingrich. That tension will never go away. It’s not a good thing for professional partisans, but hardly a tragedy for the rest of us. Or, at least, it’s a lot healthier for a republic than watching unprincipled politicians uncritically take orders from their leadership.
The House most directly represents the American voter, yet The Beltway sees pandemonium when the representatives of those voters no longer want to be managed and “governed,” but also have a voice. This doesn’t signify the end of the republic. And it doesn’t mean Republicans are on the verge of ceasing to function as a national political party. Though, you’re free to dream.