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January 02, 2013 2:30 PM Making Boehner Cry

By Ed Kilgore

Tomorrow as the new Congress convenes the first order of business in the House is the election of a Speaker. Thanks to right-wing disgruntlement over John Boehner’s handling of the recent tax bill (and his allegedly vicious treatment of conservative backbenchers), there’s a good chance enough Republicans will decline to vote for him that a second ballot will prove necessary (he must get a majority of all House members from both parties who are present and voting). If so, it would be the first multi-ballot Speaker election since 1923.

The Breitbartians are trying to stir up speculation that Boehner could be “knocked out” of the speakership if he fails to win on the first ballot, but only if an alternative like Eric Cantor quickly emerges.

That seems unlikely to say the least. Even if Cantor hypothetically had the votes and was willing to stab Boehner in the back, why would he want to take over the House GOP conference right before a debt limit fight that is unlikely to shower the House leadership in glory? Better to let the Weepy Orange Man take all the hits for that, and then, if he still wants the gavel, take it as the Ohioan sneaks out of town for a permanent cigarette break.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

Comments

  • Barbara on January 02, 2013 3:09 PM:

    Does that mean that the parties put up separate candidates and then the majority wins with voting along party lines? Because if Dems keep voting for Nancy Pelosi it could really be fun to see the internecine fighting as Rs try to prevent no more than 16 members from defecting and voting for non-Boehner or even just abstaining. The margins in the new House are really razor thin for Republicans.

  • Josef K on January 02, 2013 3:12 PM:

    Maybe I'm hoping for too much, or trying too hard not to dwell on the foppish failure that the current Congress is, but what provisions are there for a candidate to actually loose repeated ballots for the Speakership?

    That may seem a tad too extreme to credit or believe possible, but as I've said before nothing seems beyond the pale lately, especially when it comes to republicans.

  • Werewolf on January 02, 2013 3:15 PM:

    Isn't a weeping Boehner a symptom of gonorrhea?

  • hells littlest angel on January 02, 2013 3:19 PM:

    As I remember the moronic glee with which Boehner took the gavel from Pelosi, I bask in his current misery. What a dipshit.

  • thebewilderness on January 02, 2013 3:31 PM:

    The vote on the Senate bill was presented with unanimous consent. This would indicate that the Speaker's position as front man for the Republican criminal enterprise is safe, for the nonce.

  • Rich on January 02, 2013 3:34 PM:

    If Cantor really wanted the job, he would have gone for it before. he has more power in his current position, just as opposition often has, paradoxically, given the GOP more power than when it ran things.

  • joey on January 02, 2013 3:34 PM:

    Funny the one that should be replaced is spending millions right now flying back to Hawaii. This country is bass-ackwards

  • Josef K on January 02, 2013 3:38 PM:

    From joey at 3:34 PM:

    Funny the one that should be replaced is spending millions right now flying back to Hawaii.

    You'll explain your reasoning for this, I trust?

  • Bo on January 02, 2013 3:45 PM:

    I wouldn't be surprised to see Boehner resign tonight in advance of any vote. Why on earth would he want to keep the job after the way he's been kicked in the teeth by the teabaggers, Cantor, et. al.?
    As I was saying before the election, I am still expecting Paul Ryan's name to come up in the conversation. The way the GOPer hive-mind works, he "deserves" a consolation prize for losing the VP slot and he's a darling of the teabaggers. Besides that, he lies convincingly and is the author of the right-wing's most famous work of fiction . . . "The Path to Prosperity".

  • Blue Girl on January 02, 2013 3:52 PM:

    You had a chance to do just that, Joey. But you morons have no bench, that's why Mittens was your nominee. So either get over it or learn to like the taste of sour grapes. I really don't care which, just shut the fuck up. Loser.

  • Sgt. Gym Bunny on January 02, 2013 3:52 PM:

    I didn't hate the GOP and Boehner's smug, alligator-tear-streaked, faux-tanned mug so much, I'd actually pity the poor devil. It must be awfully disappointing to get the Spearkership at a watershed moment in American political history only to be undermined so viciously by your own damn party members--the bat-shitty crazy party members at that...

    Boehner would earn a semi-inkling of respect from me if just said "Screw it" and went up to that lyin' snake-in-the-grass Cantor and told him to take that gavel and shove it up his sanctimonious little blow-hole...

  • mudwall jackson on January 02, 2013 3:56 PM:

    joey on January 02, 2013 3:34 PM:

    Funny the one that should be replaced is spending millions right now flying back to Hawaii. This country is bass-ackwards

    there was an election in november. apparently, you slept through it.

  • Ron Byers on January 02, 2013 4:01 PM:

    Could somebody define a tea party victory in the debt ceiling fight?

  • MuddyLee on January 02, 2013 4:13 PM:

    Boehner, Cantor, or Ryan - to sort of quote The Fugs in Wide Wide River (circa 1969) "who set up a system, a supposedly democratic system, where you always end up voting for the lesser of three evils"? Wasn't Boehner involved in forcing Newt Gingrich out back in the 90s?

  • Kathryn on January 02, 2013 5:05 PM:

    @ hell's little angel, not just glee, who can forget the ridiculous oversized gavel he claimed as his own. One might conclude that Speaker Boehner is a tad insecure about something.

  • Memekiller on January 02, 2013 5:08 PM:

    "The Breitbartians are trying to stir up speculation that Boehner could be 'knocked out; of the speakership if he fails to win on the first ballot"

    So, it's Speaker Boehner, then.

  • Doug on January 02, 2013 5:51 PM:

    Memekiller for the win!