Red Rover, Red Rover, House GOP Pledges to Grover Over & Over


Speaker Boehner and House Republicans have made no secret of working hand in hand with their “Tax Breaks Or Bust” message guru Grover Norquist for the past year and half:

Grover Norquist: “…Speaker Boehner has taken the pledge and always kept it as a congressman. He leads a caucus in the House of Representatives, where all but six Republicans have made the commitment in writing to never raise taxes. He knows he leads a Republican Party that’s not going to raise taxes and that he personally is committed to that as well.” [MSNBC, 7/18/11]

Grover Norquist: “I’ve talked to the House leadership and the Senate leadership. They’re not going to be passing any tax increases.” [Hill, 11/15/11]

The latest casualty: the Farm Bill – “a bedrock bill to renew nutrition and agriculture programs” – is being held up by Speaker Boehner and the GOP Leadership because of complaints from a handful of conservatives including Mr. Norquist have led to a schism among House Republicans.

From CQ:

Speaker John A. Boehner is resisting a floor debate on a bedrock bill to renew nutrition and agriculture programs, amid concerns that it will spotlight divisions among Republicans and divert attention from the majority’s pre-election agenda. […]

The GOP’s internal conflicts took shape as a coalition of 11 conservative groups, including Grover Norquist’s influential Americans for Tax Reform, declared that the Agriculture Committee’s bill “fails to reform [and] creates new subsidy entitlement programs.” [7/13]

But some Republicans, including President George HW Bush and his son former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and Sen. Tom Coburn are starting to publicly disavow Norquist and his “No Revenues No Way” demands.

Responding as the grown-up he is, Mr. Norquist lobbed names at the former President and Senator calling them both “liars” and said the former Governor “doesn’t understand…he thinks he’s smart.”

If Speaker Boehner is really interested in having an adult conversation– he is going to have to lead the House GOP out of Grover’s playground and back to the table.

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