I’m not sure if I should laugh or cry…
Joshua Green at Bloomberg Businessweek has a hilarious piece about the utter fail whale that is the Tea Party caucus in Congress at the moment. In it, he details how utterly “hapless” (to use his word) the anti-Boehner contingent was when it came to their failed attempt to replace him as Speaker of the House.
He lays it out in three steps:
First step: Finding an alternative. As my editors would happily tell them, it’s a lousy job. Eric Cantor didn’t want it. Paul Ryan didn’t want it. But they decided not to let this detail slow them down.
Next step: Plotting. This one didn’t go too well either. On Wednesday night, an amused Republican staffer called me to report that Representatives Jim Jordan, Paul Gosar, Raul Labrador, and Steve Southerland were gathered at Bullfeathers, a Capitol Hill bar, openly plotting their coup. Not exactly the Roman Senate scheming to dispatch Caesar.
The final step was when newbie Kansas Representative Tim Huelskamp, who came into office in 2011, sat on the floor of the House with his iPad in plain view displaying a document titled “You would be fired if this goes out.” The document was the list of tea party caucus member he hoped would help stage the coup to get rid of Boehner as Speaker. He was so utterly indiscreet that he was photographed by a Politico journalist who then printed the photo for all to see.
As it turns out, only half of his list had the intestinal fortitude to carry through with their coup and, of course, John Boehner is still the Speaker.
And that, kids, is how you do NOT effect change in Congress. Green characterizes them like the Three Stooges. I’d say they are more like the Keystone Kops, the incompetent public servants that ran around expending tremendous amounts of energy, but generally doing more harm than good.
One one hand, I’m happy that these people are so incompetent that they are unlikely to be able to accomplish much. On the other more serious hand, I find it terrifying that these imbeciles are in positions of such power in this country. They shouldn’t be left in charge of a gas station much less our entire national government.
I cannot wait until 2014 when we can rid ourselves of these clueless menaces like a dog shaking off fleas. We can only hope they don’t do too much damage in the meantime.
P.S. Huelskamp was one of 67 Republicans today that voted against a relief package for East Coast areas hit by Hurricane Sandy. The bill funds flood insurance for Sandy victims. He’s a real patriot, that one.
[Keystone Kops CC image credit: Wikimedia Commons]