SPLIT TICKET

What we have thought for years has become painfully obvious – John "Orange Julius" Boehner has no real power and no control of his own caucus. Anecdotal evidence has suggested this in the past and now the hard numbers back it up. According to VoteView, there is a clear divide within the House GOP on the Homeland Security supplemental.

DHS_Funding_vote_114

When the Speaker of the House gets elected by the smallest margin ever and then cannot deliver a three week budget extension through the House with a massive majority, it's safe to say that the spirit of Joe Cannon has not returned to Congress in a new host. That vote also demonstrates the increasingly frequent consequences of the Republican Party's incredible lurch to the right over the last two decades (also from VoteView).

polar_house_means_2015

It's worth noting, for the conspiratorial or anti-intellectual factions, that VoteView is the product of two of the most conservative people I've ever met in academia. Guys who make Glenn Beck look like Jane Fonda (who they both hate, because of course they do). The thing is, they also have a great deal of integrity and they're more interested in the accuracy of their analysis than making ideological points. Having been a colleague of one of them for a few years and being subject to every manner of Thanks Obama rant, I have to laugh every time his findings end up being used in stories on major news sites and someone in the comment section comes forth to remind us that Ivory Tower Librul Professors are not to be trusted.

In any case, we are rapidly approaching a reality in which House Republicans are too conservative even for…the House Republicans. They provide a nice counterweight to those communist Democrats who have barely moved ideologically in a century-plus.

29 thoughts on “SPLIT TICKET”

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  • HoosierPoli says:

    The spambots have been released, and they're still not making any sense.

    Republicans have gerrymandered themselves into districts that are both almost totally secure, and yet winning in the districts is becoming more and more incompatible with winning nationally. Spinning the rope that will be used to hang them…who was that again?

  • The most interesting thing about the second chart is that southern Democrats were the liberal wing of the party before WWI.

  • Jimcat – Daniel Okrents "Last Call" shows some interesting features of Pre WWI politics and how there were many strange bedfellows on the way to woman's suffrage and prohibition. Hard to put a liberal label on a lot of it by today's standards. Or by the standards of liberal in the 1848 revolutions in Europe.

  • Comradde PhysioProffe says:

    In the last thirty or so years, it looks like every time a Democrat gets elected President, House Republicans immediately ratchet up their "conservatism". But it never ratchets back down when a Republican gets elected President.

  • There just aren't that many southern democrats any more. What used to be a powerful voting bloc is now almost enough for a baseball team. The South has been completely gerrymandered so you have a few very liberal southern democrats and a sea of southern republicans.

  • "The thing is, they also have a great deal of integrity and they're more interested in the accuracy of their analysis than making ideological points."

    OK, but their chart shows the Democrat Party drifting slowly but steadily _leftward_ for the past 7 decades. I'm sure their reasoning makes sense to them, but it has to consist of Bill Clinton being radical because he spoke about Gays In The Military (while gutting welfare, deregulating finance, etc).

  • I'm with Paul. I don't see the Democrats as staying still or moving left. In fact, I see the whole shebang as moving inexorably to the right — and the best explanation I've seen is the "Racthet and Pawl" effect.

    http://stopmebeforeivoteagain.org/stopme/chapter02.html

    Today's Democrats 50 years ago would have been considered moderate Republicans. Today's Republicans 50 years ago would have been confined to a locked ward.

  • Today's right is nuttier than yesterday's left ever became.
    Things might have come off the rails back in the 60s and 70s, but no one ever sent Abbie Hoffman to Congress.
    Now we've got hundreds of state and federal legislators who are far more extreme and who wield real—and scary—lawmaking power.

  • I'm all for polarization. Once we have distilled the Pure Reactionary 20%, they can be rounded up and sent to do reforestation work at FEMA camps.

    Or maybe we can sell them to the Chinese.

  • Man I miss those Democratic communists.I also agree strongly with this:

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  • Frank in midtown says:

    The failure of a competitor in the marketplace of ideas allowed the remaining competitors to modify their offering. Freedom wins, commie's lose also translates into: Markets win, regulators lose or individualism wins, collectivists lose or even right to free association (segregation) wins, right to engage in commerce (equal access) loses. The marketplace of ideas has to determine its new equalibrium with one less competitor.

  • " I'm sure their reasoning makes sense to them, but it has to consist of Bill Clinton being radical because he spoke about Gays In The Military (while gutting welfare, deregulating finance, etc)."

    Bill's to blame for a lot of shit (NAFTA, for starters) but Glass Steagall's repeal* (effective) was passed with a veto proof majority; per Wiki:

    "n November 4, the final bill resolving the differences was passed by the Senate 90–8,[16][note 4] and by the House 362–57.[17][note 5] The legislation was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on November 12, 1999.[18]"

    That can be laid at Newturd's feet.

    * http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gramm%E2%80%93Leach%E2%80%93Bliley_Act

  • Remember, back in the 20s the Southern Democratic caucus wanted a KKK grand pu-bah for the candidate.

    So I guess, by shaking that bloc the Dems would naturally "drift left" merely that load stone by comparison. The Rs were kind enough take them off our hands, thus sucking them into the abyss.

  • Skepticalist says:

    Chris Matthews is right. Rino now applies to the entire GOP. No more Whigs today. It's nothing but right wing right wingers that used to be considered insane by both parties.

    "What's The Matter With Kansas?" no longer covers it.

  • 'So I guess, by shaking that bloc the Dems would naturally "drift left" '

    The R party was a dead dog South of the Mason-Dixon till the shift started after the Johnson era. Democrats ruled in my part of GA till the mid 70s. This was duplicated most everywhere else in the region.

    Historical non-sequitur of 50 years thereabouts ?

    //bb

  • Can't read a graph, huh, bb?

    Racist southern Dems abandoned the Democratic Party and joined up with the Rebublicans right around the time of Nixon's Southern Strategy.

    Result: Democratic party loses the racist reactionaries (the yellow line) and conservatism goes down; Republicans get to wrangle southern racists as well as bankers and plutocrats and conservatism shoots 'way up.

    Lyndon Johnson, of course, nailed it.

  • @Mo

    This is why I contribute little.

    Yes I can read a graph, I was dealing with the words that were written that looked like a little historical revisionism.

    Get over yourself assh0le…

    //bb

  • I have to agree with the commenters who don't see the leftward drift of the Dems. Sure, it's probably true compared to the old KKK days, but in living memory? I don't see it.

    And, yes, Orange Julius is tied up by his own teatards, but they're going to need a lot more rope before they control the Repubs. It's the party of corporate shills who promise the voters more money in their pockets as well as whole arrays of hate targets. (I know they don't deliver, except maybe on the hate, but not enough people care.)

    What do the Dems offer against that? Corporate shills whose platform is "We're not teatards."

    Good luck with that. Some day enough people will be poor enough and angry enough to stop believing bullshit, but I don't see us being there yet.

  • I saw an article on Esquire about a republican house member who felt trapped into the obstruction. He (I remember it being a man, at least I think that was how it was represented) complained about how his district was drawn, so that if he even tried to work with Democrats to get any actual governing done, he would get vilified in his district for cooperating with the Kenyan Mooslem Nazi Communist, and that he would get primaried by the dark money on the right to get someone who would not compromise. I felt sorry for him for a little while, and then I said "Fuck that guy" because, really, fuck that guy. First, that rabid gerrymandered district means that he doesn't have to do a goddamn thing in congress, EVER, other than just say batshit insane things to get reelected. Second, while he's whining about the dark money that could boot him out of a job, I'm sure he loved it when the checks are mailed to him, and last time I checked, it was the "Citizens United" idiots who made sure that bribery was legal in the dark money campaign financing! So, seriously, fuck that guy, and fuck all of them, since the only thing they care about is staying in power and being "not Obama".

    Oh, and WaPo had an article about gerrymandering, to which the Facebook comments consisted of "both sides do it", "minority- majority districts" (i.e., it's the fault of the darkies) and "Liburl media bias". The examples that the article used were that in New York, the 50/50 split went about 4 more for democrats, where the split in Pennsylvania was 5 out of 18 were democratic house seats even though the democrats got more votes state wide than the republicans. So yeah, reporting facts is "Liberal Media Bias" and the "Both sides do it" is a way of letting the blatantly illegal gerrymandering by the Republicans to stand. So if the republicans are pissed that they can't get anything done, look your damn selves in the mirror. Everyone kissing the Grover Norquist ring needs to remember that nobody elected that d-bag.

  • "I felt sorry for him for a little while, and then I said "Fuck that guy" because, really, fuck that guy."

    My current city councilman was elected (re-elected, actually) as a dem on a council that is more red than blue–and propmtly switched parties. Fuck him and fuck the fucking fuckers who pull the Ben Nighthorse Campbell AFTER they get elected.

  • Mo,

    Sometimes bb gets piled on very unfairly. That was one of them.

    bb: if it sounded like historical revisionism, it didn't mean to. I was pointing out—without covering the whole of history—that until the Johnson era, the Dems were the party of the KKK. Nixon started courting these "disenfranchised voters" and Regan sealed the deal for the Rs. The Civil Rights Act was a Republican thing.

  • PhoenicianRomans says:

    @Comradde PhysioProffe Says: In the last thirty or so years, it looks like every time a Democrat gets elected President, House Republicans immediately ratchet up their "conservatism". But it never ratchets back down when a Republican gets elected President.

    Good observation. For a ratchet effect to be credible, you need topoint at two mechanisms:

    i, A mechanism encouraging moving "conservative" under a Democrat President AND
    ii, A mechanism discouraging back-sliding "liberal" under a Republican President.

    My guess would be that the first comes from attempting to activate and rile up the base irritated by the obvious Commie in the White House, and the second comes from primary challenges within the Republican Party – but I don't know enough to have any certainty on those.

  • Bitter Scribe says:

    I have to wonder how long Boehner will continue to save the Teatards from themselves. The temptation must be overwhelming to throw up his hands and say, "Fuck it. OK, you guys. Shut down the government and see how that works for you in the long run."

  • One of the disconcerting things I learned while studying the FDR years was how resolute the grasp of the Southern Democrats was on the national party. Roosevelt had to keep moral monsters like Theodore Bilbo on board to get anything through Congress, even if it meant every anti-lynching bill dying in committee or on the floor. I think the first real crack in the uneasy coalition was Truman desegregating the Armed Forces by decree, as he knew there was no way it was getting through Congress. I think Stevenson getting in instead of Eisenhower (besides requiring the intervention of alien space bats) would have brought the Southern Strategy into play a decade earlier. That would not have been any better than what we actually got.

    Now Southern Republicans control THAT national party, as far as I can tell. If anyone actually controls the national Democratic party, I have been unable to determine.

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