Thursday, September 26, 2013

The suicide caucus

A minority of Republicans are attempting to pass Mitt Romney's entire platform as a quid pro quo for not driving the country over a cliff in regard to the debt limit. Although Speaker Boehner could probably get the House to pass a sensible debt ceiling measure, he won't do it if he doesn't have a majority of his caucus and has to rely on the Democrats (the so-called Hastart Rule, a purely arbitrary political ideal). Somehow, this wily, experienced politician is being held hostage by the "suicide caucus" of his own party.

Ryan Lizza: 
The ability of eighty members of the House of Representatives to push the Republican Party into a strategic course that is condemned by the party’s top strategists is a historical oddity. ....

These eighty members represent just eighteen per cent of the House and just a third of the two hundred and thirty-three House Republicans. They were elected with fourteen and a half million of the hundred and eighteen million votes cast in House elections last November, or twelve per cent of the total. In all, they represent fifty-eight million constituents. That may sound like a lot, but it’s just eighteen per cent of the population....

...these eighty members represent an America where the population is getting whiter, where there are few major cities, where Obama lost the last election in a landslide, and where the Republican Party is becoming more dominant and more popular. Meanwhile, in national politics, each of these trends is actually reversed.

...In previous eras, ideologically extreme minorities could be controlled by party leadership. What’s new about the current House of Representatives is that party discipline has broken down on the Republican side. On the most important policy questions, ones that most affect the national brand of the party, Boehner has lost his ability to control his caucus, and an ideological faction, aided by outside interest groups, can now set the national agenda.

4 comments:

dr.primrose said...

OT. L.A. Times story, Many Latino Catholics back gay marriage, survey shows.

Basically, 2/3 of Latino RCs think gays and lesbians should be able to marry even though almost 1/2 think that sex between same-sex couples is wrong.

But only 1/4 of Latino evangelicals support same-sex marriage. But secular Latinos are even more supportive than Latino RCs.

dr.primrose said...

2nd OT. New Jersey judge orders same-sex marriage statewide.

"A New Jersey state court judge ruled that the state must permit same-sex couples to get married.

"The ruling comes in a lawsuit brought by six same-sex couples and their children. They argued that it's unfair treatment to allow them to only enter into civil unions, now that the Supreme Court has decided the federal government must recognize same-sex marriages in the states where they are legal.

***

"Friday's ruling picks up where the New Jersey Supreme Court left off in 2006, when it ruled that same-sex couples were entitled to all the rights and benefits that opposite-sex couples get.

"The state legislature followed up by creating civil unions.

"But Friday's decision stipulates that New Jersey's same-sex couples will no longer receive all the benefits of marriage under civil unions, since only married same-sex couples may receive federal benefits."

Lisa Jones said...

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JCF said...

"Basically, 2/3 of Latino RCs think gays and lesbians should be able to marry even though almost 1/2 think that sex between same-sex couples is wrong."

Hmmm. Just thinking off the top of my head, but I wonder if---because of the experience of illegal immigration---many "Latino RCs" draw a line between personal morality, and the law?

Of course, I wish they would NOT believe "sex between same-sex couples is wrong" . . . but that may come w/ more USA-acculturation.