Forget about the final three months of the year; competition for the 2013 Unintentional Hilarity award is all but over thanks to Robert Costa over at America's Shittiest WebsiteTM.

Leadership sources tell me the House GOP will soon vote on a continuing resolution that simultaneously funds the federal government and defunds Obamacare. Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor are expected to announce the decision at Wednesday's closed-door conference meeting.

This means the conservatives who have been urging Boehner to back a defunding effort as part of the CR have won a victory, at least in terms of getting the leadership to go along with their strategy. But getting such a CR through the Democratic Senate and signed into law will be very difficult — and many House Republican insiders say a "Plan B" may be needed.

Here’s how my sources expect the gambit to unfold: The House passes a "defund CR," throws it to the Senate, and waits to see what Senator Ted Cruz and his allies can do. Maybe they can get it through, maybe they can’t.
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Boehner and Cantor will be supportive, and conservative activists will rally.

But if Cruz and company can't round up the votes, the House leadership will likely urge Republicans to turn their focus to the debt limit, avoid a shutdown, and pass a revised CR — one that doesn't defund Obamacare.

For the moment, though, the leadership is officially undecided. "No decisions have been made, or will be made, until House Republican members meet and talk tomorrow," says Michael Steel, Boehner’s spokesman.
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Where to start.

Yes, Bob. It may in fact be somewhat difficult to get the Democratic Senate to hop on board with the pet project of unreconstructed Teatards. Informed Sources also speculate that it could maybe, possibly be a little difficult to get the President, who does not have to run for office again, to repeal his signature legislative accomplishment, however underwhelming or flawed it may be.

Indeed, "many House Republican insiders" believe that some sort of backup plan may be necessary.

The only flaw with that statement is its implication that the scenario described here constitutes a "plan" in any sense of the term.

Meanwhile, well-liked Senator and noted bipartisan Ted Cruz will get to work on getting fourteen Democrats to board the FreedomWorks Express. I wonder who will jump ship first, Chuck Schumer or Dianne Feinstein? Maybe Dick Durbin. Sources hear that Bernie Sanders is already a lock to defect. Thirteen more to go, Ted!

We close out this journalistic abortion with a casual reference to destroying the global economy if by some miracle this brilliant plan happens to fail. It's beautiful to see that modern conservatism has reached a point where "and then we engineer the failure of the economy" doesn't even require an explanation. It can be mentioned in passing as though it is too obvious and mundane to explain in any detail.

For someone who is paid to talk about political science, I read and watch a shockingly small quantity of political commentary and news. This is why.

19 thoughts on “JUST IN CASE”

  • Question is, at what point does the bizzare construct that is American conservatism come apart from being asked to believe one impossible thing too many? Will it be possible to avoid the debris?

  • Ed: You need to give up your dreams of academic glory and move to NYC and start writing for TDS or Colbert.

    Jeebus, my son and I were laughing so hard, I had tears running down my cheeks.

  • @Tim H: Not any time soon and how well you avoiding the debris now may be a useful predictor of how well you will be able to continue to avoid it. Or maybe not.

  • I don't mind it when the Republican Party finds itself 'Hoist by their own Teatards,' because usually, it's funny.

    But now, before the 'hoisting,' they want everyone in this country to walk the plank.

    The Republican Party is now completely in thrall to it's base, a collection of absolutist religiously insane people who never outgrew their 'Terrible Two's' – and the 'Teatarded Terrible Two's' politicians they've elected in their state, and worse yet, our national legislatures.

    This is 'Government By Hissy-Fit."
    The problem is, it's not THEIR breath they're threatening to hold, it that they're threatening to cut off OUR Oxygen supply.

    And any sane heads who may still be left, are powerless because they're afraid of being primaried and losing their jobs in the next election.

    And so, this country and its people's present and future, are of less concern than keeping their jobs, and having their party come out ahead and get rid of that Nigrah's Obamacare Obamination (which is actually their own Heritage Foundation Plan from the 90's).
    Costs be damned!!!!!!!!!

    Our jobs and party over people!
    OUR JOBS UND PARTY OBER ALLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • The "TeaTards" are mostly useful idiots, doing the bidding of the .1%, mostly. "*isms" have limited extensibility, corporatism is unlikely to be an exception in the long run, though I may not live to see it.

  • So the Emperor and his court walk the parade naked and the journalists and pundits, consulting their notes, describe in great detail the fine robes and lovely shoes. Because professionalism and sophistication mean being able to see (and describe and analyze) what the simple common people cannot see.

  • Republicans and TeaTards can shut down the government and crash the global economy and cause misery on a scale unprecedented and they will still come out smelling like roses. If they submit a CR that funds the government and defunds Obamacare, all they have to do when the Senate doesn't pass it is blame the Democrats for putting party over country and it's really all those damn lie-burals' fault. I mean, we gave them a budget, but they just wouldn't pass it.

    Here's how it'll read on the news: "Senate Democrats refused to pass the House's Continuing Resolution today, forcing a government shutdown." Johnny McFuckstick will lap it up and never think twice about it because that's what he's heard all his life: Democrats are sneaky traitors who only care about money and power and Republicans are righteous friends of the little man. And then Johnny McFuckstick will go tell his friend Bob Cornholer about what awful people those Democrats are and I'm sure glad that Republicans are fighting for me, and Bob will agree wholeheartedly, because Democrats are baby-killers and gun-grabbers and they want to turn us all into chicks. Real Men vote Republican.

    It's so wonderful that WE know who to blame, but what are WE going to do to make sure that Johnny McFuckstick knows and does it really matter, anyway?

  • I'm curious if the Sunday talkees that routinely say Obama "lacks leadership" because he can't un-crazy the House will apply the same logic to Ted Cruz when his idea crashes and burns. Maybe they'll do it when he runs for president? No? Why is everyone laughing?

  • The Koch Brothers won. Pretty much simple as that. We all thought that the goal was to get people like Bachmann and Cruz elected so that they could pass legislation that would enable corporate entities to rape the nation. (Only, it wouldn't be rape, because "rape" presumes the legal right to refuse, which would have been eliminated.)

    But they were wilier than we thought. The system as is exists is already plenty corporate-friendly; regulation is a joke, and litigation sends them into an arena where money to pay for lawyers (or for settlements that represent only a fraction of their profits in pursuing their abusive agenda) means that they've won before the opening bell.

    So all they've had to do is maintain a complete and total status quo. No new legislation. No Congressional oversight. No government at all. Just complete and utter immobility on the part of the authorities to do even the pittance of a job that they still have.

    Enter the Tea Party. Which was and will be a joke–hint, any movement that involves wearing Old Timey Costumes is not a serious thing–but which crystallized the GOP base into an impregnable bastion of crazy. Which removed "politics" from the political process by removing the ability of the GOP to nominate sane candidates, or, once elected, to compromise in a system that only works by compromise.

    And they did it. They were never going to get a majority–a real legislative majority–in particular, they've guaranteed that the American people will continue to staff the Oval Office with Democrats for the foreseeable future–but that was never the goal. The goal was to make one half of the two party system vapor-lock that system either by proposing legislation that cannot pass (but which holds up the development-and-voting process so that real legislation cannot be ushered along), or by blocking any proposed legislation from the other side.

    You don't need to "win Washington" if you've already got a power-structure in place in the free market. You just need to paralyze it.

    In other words, guess what? Grover Norquist got his wish: Government has been drowned in the bathtub.

    And the world ends, not with a bang, but a whimper.

  • 'And the world ends', That would be 'and the promise of the USA ends' , not the world, Mr. D…. That comes later….

  • "Meanwhile, well-liked Senator and noted bipartisan Ted Cruz will get to work on getting fourteen Democrats to board the FreedomWorks Express."

    I wouldn't be surprized if we get a "Gang of X" to agree to pass the CR while cutting SS and food stamps and eliminating the capital gains tax.

  • Tim H. Says:
    September 18th, 2013 at 2:49 am

    "Question is, at what point does the bizzare construct that is American conservatism come apart from being asked to believe one impossible thing too many? Will it be possible to avoid the debris?"

    At this rate, never – people's willingness to believe is unlimited.

    And the moreso since the hard-core b*stards don't feel the pain (or feel it very indirectly). The 1% are profiting, and the Tea Party rank and file follow the 'slogan' 'Keep Government Out of My Medicare'.

    So long as they don't actually lose their government benefits, it's OK for them.

  • In a system such as ours, a population gets the government it deserves.

    If a significant proportion of our citizenry hate the government and don't want it to do much of anything beyond enforcing the Christian version of Sharia Law, then a meaningful proportion of our representatives will be of that mind and will implement that agenda.

    A political science professor once told me that the founding fathers intentionally set up the federal government to make it much easier to stop it from doing things than to get it to do things. It appears the tea baggers and their backers are exploiting that setup.

  • It's situations like this that makes me glad for a parliamentary style of govt. where when supply is blocked the government goes into double dissolution and elections are immediately called. It's the nuclear option, but it does put the ruling party on notice that if they aren't prepared to buy off the independents then they'd better toe the line with them.

    I was reading that Cruz is on the nose w the House as even he's realised that the whole thing is DOA in the Senate and White House.

  • "It's beautiful to see that modern conservatism has reached a point where "and then we engineer the failure of the economy" doesn't even require an explanation. It can be mentioned in passing as though it is too obvious and mundane to explain in any detail."

    Well, they *have* pretty much been working on that every day since at least 2008. Most people don't go into tons of specifics about how they brush their teeth everyday either.

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