Did I miss the lingering effects of the supposedly disastrous-for-Republicans government shutdown, which was the obvious motivation of Paul Ryan's November 19, 2013 pre-budget-negotiation-guarantee that, and I quote, “We will keep the government funding at the current level if need be.”
Atta boy Paul, that's a tough negotiating position...not!
Since the government shut down for 16 days last October, the Democratic Party's 2014 electoral prospects and President Barack Obama's approval ratings have plummeted due to the Obamacare website roll-out disaster, cancellation of insurance plans Democrats had promised Americans they could keep, and hikes in policy premiums. Curiously, despite a government shutdown that establishment Republicans feared so much that they betrayed Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Mike Lee (R-UT) and other conservatives attempts to de-fund or delay Obamacare at the 11th hour, GOP prospects for the 2014 election have greatly improved.
Of course, one of the reasons for the shutdown was to make clear to future voters, if they didn't already know, that there are no Republican fingerprints on the Affordable Care Act passed exclusively with Democrat votes; and that the GOP was prepared to provide relief to now to the victims of Obamacare.
In other words, the Cruz-Lee government shutdown HELPED solidify electoral support for Republicans with Americans opposed to Obamacare. No one was hurt this government shutdown, as they never are, since all government employees that lose time for work always get their back-pay reimbursed. But the nervous nellies that are Speaker John Boehner and budget chairman Paul Ryan simply don't know victory when they see it, and can't accept it when they do.
The deal obliterates the "Boehner Rule" that had demanded cuts equal to any increase in the debt ceiling, which produced the sequester cuts that prevailed for the past two years. While imperfect in their application across the board to domestic spending and disproportionate application to defense, they at least actually cut spending. The now dead Boehner Rule would have required MORE cuts equal to any increase in the debt ceiling, which Ryan has already signaled will be the "clean" increase President Obama demands.
No, government writ large will not be shut down, which of course guarantees a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year for all politicians that like to pretend they are solving problems. But as for conservative government in the House, it essentially shut down and died about two seconds after tea partiers opposed to Obamacare delivered it to the GOP after the 2010 mid-term election. The Ryan-Murray deal would be the final nail in that coffin.
Yesterday, Senate Budget Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) declared that the budget deal, which increases fees on airline travelers while restoring the sequester cuts, would foster economic growth:
Increasing taxes and spending only doubles down on two of the main impediments to economic growth. This is fundamental and we hope that the number of real conservative Republicans in the House and Senate still number enough to shoot down this Obama-nation (President Obama approves of the deal, which should tell the less informed all they need to know) of a deal.
Where did the conservative budget hawk that earned Paul Ryan the VP-nomination on the last GOP ticket go? Beware, as it appears he will also try to push deals on amnesty for illegal aliens and an ENDA bill that would prevent employers from firing men act out gender confusion in the workplace.
"One man with courage makes a majority." - Andrew Jackson