Talking Points Memo informed us a couple of days ago that most of the GOP House contingent is willing to bring on a government shutdown in order to stymie the implementation of Obamacare:
In a letter (PDF) dated July 18, some 127 House GOP lawmakers urged Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) not to permit “any legislation” to come to the floor that includes Affordable Care Act implementation funds. The implied message: shut down the government unless Democrats agree to defund President Obama’s signature law.
Missouri House members who signed the letter (pdf): Todd Akin (R-2); Vicky Hartzler (R-4); Billy Long (R-7); Sam Graves (R-6) and Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-9). Conspicuous by her absence on this list is Jo Ann Emmerson (R-8). Either she’s got more sense than the other GOPers or she was absent the day the letter was shopped around.
Of course last time that these clowns played the economic brinksmanship game they cost the country $1.3 billion dollars and damaged its credit rating – all to avoid raising tax rates a few paltry percentage points for our wealthiest citizens. Now they’re willing to do the same thing in order to indulge their spite against the Affordable Care Act.
But wait – these guys aren’t quite as stupid as they seem. Today, we learn that while they don’t plan on backing down in the long run, they are willing to delay their temper tantrum until after the election when they’ll no longer have to answer to the constituents their ideological rigidity would have quite correctly angered:
House conservatives urged Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) to back a stopgap spending bill that would extend into 2013 and take the issue of government funding off the table during the election and the jammed lame-duck session this fall.
Odds are that Boehner will go along with this demand because, as TPM puts it, he “must either subdue his right-wing members long enough to get through the election, or place his party’s November hopes in serious jeopardy.”