Friday, November 07, 2008

Note to Boehner: Quit while you're ahead

I'm really starting to dislike Rep. John Boehner. I thought him ridiculous when he stood up in front of reporters and said that Rep. Nancy Pelosi's speech to the Congress was the reason why some House GOP members didn't vote for the bailout the first time around. Boehner said her "partisan speech" "poisoned the conference." I read Pelosi's speech and watched the video. It wasn't partisan or poison. If House GOP members are that sensitive, they shouldn't have their jobs. Let's call a spade a spade here. The House GOP members were wimps and needed a fall guy (or girl, in this case).

Then Boehner wrote that letter to House GOP members the day after the election, in an effort to keep his minority leadership. A partisan letter, might I add. I talked about it in a previous post.

And then, today I heard on the news Boehner's comments about President-elect Barack Obama's pick for chief of staff -- Rep Rahm Emanuel:

"This is an ironic choice for a President-elect who has promised to change Washington, make politics more civil, and govern from the center."

This from a man who wrote a letter that was all about how the Republicans were going to win Americans over to their side and how they were going to have their own agenda. Boehner wouldn't know change if it crawled up and bit him on the posterior. I realize Emanuel has been said to have a "take-no-prisoners" style, but that is not Obama's style. Give Obama some credit -- does Boehner think he hired Emanuel to run roughshod over him? The people Obama picks to be on his staff or in his cabinet essentially work for him, and while I don't see him as a control freak, he is still in control as the President. This isn't George W. Bush's White House where the President sits back and lets those around him pull the strings.

As far as change goes, like Boehner, Rachel Maddow also asked last night on her show whether some of Obama's latest hires represented change, because they were either in the Clinton White House or worked for Obama on the campaign. I say a change from the last eight years is a change we are comfortable with. The Clinton years were good years. But I'd also argue that these aren't the Clinton years, no matter how many Clintonites Obama might hire. HE is the President. Not Bill Clinton. However, Steve Benen from The Washington Monthly talked Maddow down by telling her that if Obama wants to hire experienced people, those people will undoubtedly have been involved in politics at some point in the last several years. Sen. Dick Lugar, a Republican (gasp), has been mentioned as a possible pick for Obama's secretary of state. Of course, Lugar's spokeperson said Lugar is fine where he is, so that might be the end of that. But give credit to Obama for wanting to have Republicans in his cabinet. Not his fault if they aren't interested. Colin Powell, a Republican (double gasp), has been mentioned as a possible pick for secretary of defense or education. But no, Boehner is right, Obama is all about doing things the same tired way.

Boehner is obviously already starting his plan to win Americans back to the GOP's side and put forth the GOP agenda. Thing is, he doesn't realize you don't win by doing the SAME things you've been doing. What kind of leader is that? He blamed Pelosi's speech like a coward. He wrote that letter to the House GOP members that detailed no changes whatsoever from the way Republicans have been doing things, which obviously hasn't been working because they lost even more seats in Congress this time around. And now, Boehner's putting Obama down for not being serious about change? Puh-lease.