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Ripped from the Headlines: GOP Priorities in the News

Speaker Boehner and House Republicans keep saying their focus is on jobs and economy, but 168 days into the 113thCongress the American people are still waiting for the GOP to put forward a bill to create jobs and strengthen the economy. Instead, GOP leadership has spent countless taxpayer dollars on partisan investigations and dead-end bills to restrict women’s health choices to “satisfy vocal elements of their base.”

Here’s how that is playing…

Politico: The GOP’s clueless caucus

They’ve waxed philosophic about “legitimate rape,” reflected on the economic role of “wetbacks” and denounced the actions of “brazen, self-described illegal aliens.” They’ve lamented that “mom got in the workplace” and called out the United States attorney general for casting “aspersions on my asparagus.”

Call them the clueless caucus of the Republican Party…

National Journal: The GOP’s Steve King Problem

Earlier this year, the Republican National Committee released a 100-page report detailing how the GOP needed to retrofit its agenda and soften its tone. But if Republican officials had wanted to save time, they could have issued a shorthand summary that read: Be less like Steve King…

But if distancing themselves from King is the goal, Republicans are off to an uneven start. The party’s rank-and-file members have instead sought to emulate him, employing the very kind of agenda and tone on immigration that Republicans once said they needed to distance themselves from.

MSNBC: IRS ‘scandal’: Issa’s case crumbles after release of transcripts

“This interview transcript…debunks conspiracy theories about how the IRS first started reviewing these cases,” Cummings wrote in a letter to Issa. “Answering questions from Committee staff for more than five hours, this official—who identified himself as a ‘conservative Republican’—denied that he or anyone on his team was directed by the White House to take these actions or that they were politically motivated.”

ThinkProgress: Congressman Claims People Struggling To Survive On Food Stamps Are ‘Intentionally Buying Overpriced Food’

Conservative firebrand Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) argued in a press release on Tuesday that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides cushy benefits to recipients and accused Democrats protesting proposed cuts of engaging in a “left-wing publicity stunt intended to make it appear proposed cuts to food stamps would leave families unable to feed themselves.”

Politico: Right wing, John Boehner in Hastert rule fight

House Speaker John Boehner’s right wing is acting up again.

First, hard-line conservatives failed in a January coup against the Ohio Republican. Then they tried to force a special meeting on immigration reform — but GOP leaders beat them to the punch. Now, fearful of a capitulation on immigration and fiscal issues, they want to force Boehner to have a majority of Republican support each time it considers a bill to increase spending.

New York Magazine: Trent Franks’s Abortion Bill Passes the House, With One Last Gaffe

Now that Trent Franks’s 20-week abortion ban has passed the House, it stands no chance in the Senate. So the debate before its 228-196 passage was probably the last opportunity for the bill’s supporters (and its opponents) to get in some grandstanding on this bit of legislation…

As debate on the bill started, Rep. Michael Burgess, a Republican supporter from Texas and a former OB/GYN, appeared to argue that fetuses in the womb were conscious because they masturbate: “They stroke their face. If they’re a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. If they feel pleasure, why is it so hard to believe that they could feel pain?” It’s not the world’s biggest gaffe, but it gets “masturbating fetus” into a headline.

Radio Iowa: King organizes anti-immigration reform event in DC

Republican Congressman Steve King is among a group holding a six-hour-long press conference today in Washington, D.C. to insist on securing the southern border before any reform of the immigration system.

Business Insider: The Republican Party Is Stuck On A Suicidal Mission

It’s as if they didn’t learn a thing from the 2012 elections. Republicans are on the same suicide mission as before – - trying to block immigration reform (if they can’t scuttle it in the Senate, they’re ready to in the House), roll back the clock on abortion rights (they’re pushing federal and state legislation to ban abortions in the first 22 weeks), and stop gay marriage wherever possible.

As almost everyone knows by now, this puts them the wrong side of history.

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