John Boehner is the new speaker of the House. He has promised to “give government back to the people” and make “tough decisions” to cut spending.
Based on what we saw from Mr. Boehner in the final few weeks of the lame duck session, he must mean the “people” with whom he hobnobs at fundraisers, because the only “people” to whom he has fought to give the government spoils are wealthy “people.”
He didn’t wrestle with making “tough decisions” about how to pay for his $80 billion gift to his rich friends. When he pushed to extend the Bush-era tax cuts to the wealthiest “people” in America, he just rang up more debt for the rest of us.
Now he is flip-flopping about the Republican promise to cut spending by $100 billion in 2011. Suddenly he’s not so certain he can manage to save $100 billion for the American “people” after he gave $80 to his “people”. But no matter. His base doesn’t really pay attention to the facts; they are happy to keep drinking the Kool-Aid from the rabid right moguls that they adore.
The Republicans are probably thanking their lucky stars that they only have a majority in the House. Otherwise all their bluster about repealing the “people’s” health care program might actually pass and cost the “people” an additional $130 Billion in the first ten years and more than a trillion dollars in the next.
Of course their sense of irony and shame has not prevented the Republicans in Congress from breaking two campaign promises with their efforts to repeal the health care law. First, they are exempting this repeal from their pledge to make the “tough decisions” necessary to fully pay for everything they do. Second, they are ignoring their promise of openness by imposing a closed rule: no pesky amendments will be allowed. It’s all great theater, and it will be roundly applauded by their adoring fans.