Boehner's failure signals marginalization of GOP(Read article summary)
If House Speaker John Boehner can't get Republicans to back a tax increase for the richest 0.3 percent of Americans, it has lost its claim to mainstream status.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Remarkably, John Boehner couldnâ€™t get enough House Republicans to vote in favor of his proposal to keep the Bush tax cuts in place on the first million dollars of everyoneâ€™s income andÂ applyÂ the old Clinton rates only to dollars over and above a million.
What does Boehnerâ€™s failure tell us about the modern Republican party?
That it has become a party of hypocrisy masquerading as principled ideology. The GOP talks endlessly about the importance of reducing the budget deficit. But it isnâ€™t even willing to raise revenues from the richest three-tenths of one percent of Americans to help with the task. Weâ€™re talking about 400,000 people, for crying out loud.Â
It has become a party that routinely shills for its super-wealthy patrons at a time in our nationâ€™s history when the middle class is shrinking, the median wage is dropping, and the share of Americans in poverty is rising.Â
It has become a party of spineless legislators more afraid of facing primary challenges from right-wing kooks than of standing up for whatâ€™s right for America.
For all these reasons it has become irrelevant to the problems America faces.
No wonder a majority of Americans now say the Republican Party is too extreme, according toÂ a poll released Thursday by CNN/ORC.
53 percent â€” including 22 percent of Republicans themselves â€” say the GOPâ€™s views and policies have pushed them out of the mainstream. Thatâ€™s significantly higher than in 2010, when fewer than 40 percent thought the GOP too extreme.
Meanwhile, 57 percent now say Democrats are â€śgenerally mainstream.â€ť
The Republican Party in the process of marginalizing itself out of existence. I am tempted to say good riddance, but that would be premature.Â