I stepped out last night, away from politics, to be the celebrity chef at a cooking school. It was refreshing to tune out the political world.
But when I checked into my hotel after eleven last night, there was a backlog of weepy, crying emails from people ready to surrender.
Because the GOP has gone from being not liked to being not liked? Because this Congress has gone from being the worst ever to the worst ever?
Surrender should not be an option. This fight has been and remains about Obamacare. A Republican Party fretting over polling should consider that polling will rebound in their direction with a victory. The GOP should also consider that some of the negatives in the polls are from their own side angry at their reluctance to actually fight the good fight.
Republican leaders who have never wanted this fight have tried at all costs to avoid fighting it. They have tried to wrap the continuing resolution into the debt ceiling then into a grand bargain.
Conservatives should keep the fight squarely on Obamacare.
What is most eye opening is that the Republican leaders have grown so detatched from their base that they will willingly push a medical device tax repeal on behalf of K Street lobbyists while ignoring the very people who actually vote for them.
Republicans reeling from polls should consider what the reaction of their base will be if they have gone this far and surrender with nothing — or with only a sop to special interests on K Street.
The path forward is simple. Keep the debt ceiling and continuing resolution separate. Raise the former and refuse movement on the latter without a commitment to delay Obamacare. If employers get a delay, individuals should get a delay and no fine. The website does not even work. This case can be effectively prosecuted before the public.
The GOP should have this fight and make this case. It is sellable. The only problem is the GOP leadership does not want to sell it. They'd rather surrender and shift blame to conservatives.
Speaker Boehner has previously said he would stop doing back room deals with the White House. He should do as he said. He should keep the government closed until Democrats agree to delay Obamacare.