The House vote to approve a resolution authorizing Speaker John Boehner to sue President Obama should be a moment of truth for the Republican party. Want to know just how far off the rails your party has gone? This. This is how far.
Because this has nothing to do with the law. Trust me, Boehner wants nothing more than for a judge to stop the lawsuit from ever reaching a courtroom. Should it land in a courtroom, the decision won’t matter a bit. First off, legal wrangling would likely delay that decision until after President Obama leaves office. So no, it will not restore checks and balances. And since few Democrats hang their electoral hopes on Obama, the decision itself would have little effect on elections from that point on. Second, the defending attorneys would have a field day highlighting the contradictions and general ridiculousness of accusing the President of constitutional over-reach for doing something that was originally a GOP idea.
No, this lawsuit is intended to provide a temporary rallying cry for Republicans as they head home to campaign. That’s right: the leader of the Republican House is willing to expend numerous manhours and likely millions of dollars on a transparently frivolous lawsuit that has almost no chance of making it to court, merely as a campaign strategy. And he is doing this in the midst of a border crisis at home, Israel and Palestine engaged in an escalating war, Ukraine posing a very real risk of plunging the Western hemisphere into war, and numerous other serious issues. The lawsuit also comes after the Republicans have voted against the Affordable Care Act more then FIFTY TIMES. On that level, this is just the latest impotent attack. Meanwhile, can you point to one economic initiative House Republicans passed during the same timespan? There was a Recession on, and Republicans’ only contribution was pushing for the government to get out of debt – something that many economists say slowed down rather than pushed economic recovery.
The Republican House clearly, egregiously took an obstructionist strategy from the day President Obama was elected and thus already have a “do-nothing” reputation. This lawsuit appears to confirm the widely held theory that the GOP is in a downward spiral.
As if that isn’t bad enough, the cold hard look in the mirror moment for all sane Republicans should come when they consider who might be persuaded by this lawsuit. For Boehner to expect people to believe this is about checks and balances or the law is insulting to the intelligence. Anyone with half a brain and even a little political awareness knows it is not. Several Republican friends who never agree with me on anything, ever, agree with me on this lawsuit. “It is a waste of time when we have no time to waste,” as one of my friends very eloquently put it. Hell, even Neil Cavuto says so in this instantly classic interview with Michelle Bachmann.
Boehner is willing to take this totally unprecedented, distracting, absurd step to court the Bachmanns and Palins and the, I’m sorry, misinformed lemmings who follow them. A second of critical, common sense thought reveals that the Republicans are suing the President for doing something that they wanted done. But Boehner knows voter demographics and the political mindset of the country are changing in ways unfavorable to the GOP. Despite all the shameless gerrymandering, many Republicans cannot win their district without firing up voters on the farthest Right fringe.
I implore Republicans to consider whether this is really who you want to be. I am neither Republican or Democrat. Frankly, I’d be happiest if both parties withered and died. The two-party system has become an embarrassing failure, especially during the past several years. But this is the system we have, and the only way it works at all is if we have two parties that reflect large portions of the electorate. Which is why we – even non-Republicans – desperately need the GOP to come to its senses.