Government Shutdown? Impeachment? The GOP After November

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Jonathan Bernstein sketches his view of the likeliest scenario for Congressional Republicans after November:

The third strategy would be to forget about their agenda, and basically pretend they’re still in opposition — that is, to continue rejectionism.  Don’t think 1995, or 1997-2000, but think more of 1993-1994.  Obviously, this works best if they don’t actually take control of either House of Congress, or at the very least fall short in the Senate.  Still, they certainly could try it even if they have majorities in Congress.  They could (as Democrats did this year) not bother with a budget.  They would have to pass appropriations bills, but instead of using that process to really challenge the status quo, they would win some symbolic stuff, and fight carefully chosen fights on specific issues.  So they could actually eliminate earmarks and make a big show about including a statement of Constitutional legitimacy in all the bills they pass, giving them some victories to take home, and they could stage some losing votes on Tea Party priorities, preferably Constitutional amendments that they could all vote for without risking much.  Then, they could pass most of the appropriations bills without major veto-bait, but go ahead and maybe zero out some ACA funding and have a major fight over that one before surrendering, without the threat of a government shutdown hanging over everything.  Oh, and they could schedule votes all day long on cap-and-trade, and Obama’s budget, and try to get Dems to take bad votes on them — while fighting real fights over in the Senate on judicial and exec branch nominations.

He doesn’t see a government shutdown fight coming. And John Boehner, surely mindful of Newt Gingrich’s example, says that’s not his goal.

Meanwhile TNR‘s Jonathan Chait is confident that Republicans “are going to impeach President Obama” over something, perhaps TBD. But for now House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman Darrell Issa tells our Jay Newton-Small that impeachment isn’t part of his plan.

Update: Jon Cohn lists three silver linings for Democrats in a Republican sweep.

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