Signs of intelligent life in the GOP caucus? Maybe.
Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said he believes the primary goal of President Obama’s second term is to “annihilate the Republican Party.”
“Given what we heard yesterday about the president’s vision for his second term, it’s pretty clear to me that he knows he can’t do any of that as long as the House is controlled by Republicans,” Boehner said in a speech Tuesday to The Ripon Society. “So we’re expecting over the next 22 months to be the focus of this administration as they attempt to annihilate the Republican Party.
“And let me just tell you, I do believe that is their goal — to just shove us into the dustbin of history.”
Boehner also ripped into Obama for his unseriousness regarding the nation’s fiscal crisis.
“In our meetings before Christmas, the president was so tired of me talking about when we were going to deal with an entitlement crisis that he looked at me and said: ‘Boehner, we don’t have a spending problem. We have a healthcare problem.’ It gives you some idea of the challenge that we’re facing,” Boehner said.
“For a guy who’s run up the deficit 60 percent — 60 percent of the deficit has occurred under his watch — when you see this, and then you hear him say: ‘I am not going to negotiate on the debt limit. I am not going to deal with the debt limit. That’s Congress’s problem!’ … Frankly, I think it’s irresponsible.”
Boehner’s speech was not open to the press, but The Ripon Society, a Republican think tank, released a transcript and video on Wednesday with the knowledge of the Speaker’s office.
Talking to the choir in the rehearsal room doesn’t do any good. Boehner needs to make this case clearly and consistently outside closed-door sessions.