Boehner Declares War: Conservative Groups Have “Lost All Credibility”

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J. Scott Applewhite / AP

From left: House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio joined by House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan takes reporters' questions, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 11, 2013.

Speaker of the House John Boehner lobbed a fresh grenade Thursday in the ongoing civil war within the Republican Party, decrying conservative outside groups who have stymied him at nearly every turn over the last year.

“Frankly, I think they’re misleading their followers. I think they’re pushing our members in places where they don’t want to be. And frankly, I just think that they’ve lost all credibility,” he said at a press conference. “They pushed into this fight to defund Obamacare and to shut down the government. Most of you know, my members know, that wasn’t exactly the strategy that I had in mind. But if you recall, the day before the government reopened, one of the people that — one of these groups stood up and said, ‘Well, we never really thought it would work.’ Are you kidding me?”

Boehner also defended the bipartisan budget deal that will be voted on Thursday. “I thought it was my job and my obligation to stand up for conservatives here in the Congress who want more deficit reduction,” he said. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the budget deal would reduce deficits by roughly $85 billion over the next 10 years, although it does increase discretionary spending over the next two years while undoing some $63 billion in scheduled across-the-board cuts.

After a tumultuous year that began with a failed effort by the conservative minority to unseat Boehner and included a three-week government shutdown over Obamacare, the speaker said he’s in a better position now. “I actually do feel like we’re in a better place,” he said.

On CNN Wednesday, conservative Rep. Raul Labrador expressed frustration that Boehner is turning his sights on the outside groups. “In fact it’s a shame, because in our conference, we have members of our conference that are constantly pulling out their cards and saying that they’ll do whatever John Boehner tells them to do,” he said. “I was really saddened to see John Boehner do this, and I’ve actually had a good relationship with him.”

“When it comes to ‘credibility,’ actions speak louder than words,” said Matt Kibbe, the president of FreedomWorks, a conservative advocacy group. “The math is not that complicated. They are spending another $63 billion that we don’t have.”

On Wednesday, the Republican Study Committee, a group of House Republicans that steers the conservative agenda, fired longtime executive director Paul Teller in part for leaking information to outside groups during the 16 day government shutdown. A letter signed by the Heritage Action, FreedomWorks, For America, Tea Party Patriots, and other rightward leaning organizations defended Teller, calling him “one of the true heroes of the conservative movement.”

GOP leadership aides tell TIME that the budget deal will likely pass the House Thursday with a majority of Republican votes.

26 comments
ThomasHall
ThomasHall

The GOP and their baggy spawn NEVER had any creditability as their failed, GOP-Reagan-to-present "trickle-down economics" increased incomes for the top one percent by 275% while the Middle Class shrank by 25% and wages for the 99% stagnated. Their decades-long push of deregulation lead to endless corporate and financial scandals including the subprime mortgage rich bankster fraud that took down Wall St., our economy, took $15 trillion from Americans' household wealth, 4+ million lost homes, 9 million+ underwater, 9 million lost jobs on top of the five million manufacturing jobs shipped overseas under Bush-Cheney along with $400+ billion in uncollected taxes from thousands of offshore tax dodges.

Most of the problems that Americans face today--crippling National Debt, which was less than $800 billion through Carter, most of the incoming, ongoing bills, the wrecked economy, nearly all the deaths and wounding of our soldiers since Vietnam, and the onging 20+ years of unpaid-for, combined wars were all created by the war-mongering, war-profiteering, pro-rich, anti-poor, anti-worker GOP that have historically NEVER represented the working class.

AlphaJuliette
AlphaJuliette

It's about time he did this.  But I won't be convinced until he can garner a few bills through the House with bi-partisan support.

Stay tuned.

ThomasHall
ThomasHall

Conservative Republicans have lost all credibility for some time now. The Bush-Cheney regime should have put a nail in their coffin having doubled our National Debt, burdened America's future for generations with incoming, ongoing bills like the unpaid-for Medicare Rx drug giveaway to the drug makers at $65 billion per year, or the 12+ year, $2.8 TRILLION, unpaid-for Bush tax cuts, the $1.7 TRILLION budget deficit left behind, the 20+ years of combined wars based upon lies, arrogance, incompetence, and war-profiteering greed whose lifetimes of war bills are projected to cost $6 TRILLION.

In fact, nearly all US-Coalition soldier deaths since Vietnam have been caused by the GOP, and most of the problems that America and working class Americans face today were caused by the GOP--from the crippling National Debt, les than $800 billion through Carter, to the incoming debts, mortgaging America's future to China, the deregulated banks on Wall St. whose subprime mortgage rich bankster fraud took down our economy and robbed Americans of over $15 trillion while taking 9 million jobs on top of the five million manufacturing jobs shipped under Bush-Cheney alone overseas or to Mexico.

jason024
jason024

Even if you buy into the premise that America is a "center right" country. In what world does the TP think their far right ideologies can EVER have enough support of the majority of Americans? There comes a point in time where  moderates and even some conservatives can't get behind your scorched earth tactics or policies. 

That time has come. Goodbye and good riddance.

sacredh
sacredh

All I want for Christmas is a GOP civil war.

Hollywooddeed
Hollywooddeed

This is because Tammy Faye Boehner has credibility.

tommyudo
tommyudo

Where was Boehner before today in speaking  out against the right wing crazies?

I'll tell you where he was, cowering in fear from them  during the govt. shut down, just so he can   keep his speakership. It's frightening to know that the man third in line from the Presidency is a sniveling , contemptuous  and self-centered coward.

curt3rd
curt3rd

"The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the budget deal would reduce deficits by roughly $85 billion over the next 10 years, although it does increase discretionary spending over the next two years while undoing some $63 billion in scheduled across-the-board cuts"

What a joke. This isnt even a drop in the bucket.   We are on our way to becoming Greece

JamesGordon1
JamesGordon1

Where do I  begin with  the  G O P  losing  credibility  ,,hmm  lets  start  with  the  "obama  care "  that  was  the  original  G O P  health  care  plan  back in the  90's  till  they  were  corrupted and  bought off  by  the  insurance  company , Let's  not  forget  "Support  the  Troops "  Then  when a  bill  would have helped  veterans was  shot  down  by  republicans  saying  there  was  no money,  Then  they  gave  the  rich another  tax  break . From  there  we  could  go on the  NO  Weapons  of mass destruction  were found . A LIE IS A  LIE IS A  LIE  no matter  what  party is in power . I  Friggin no  longer  vote  for  these Liars  no matter  how  big of Bible  they  stand  on.

yogi
yogi

Last March of the Ents.

Irony
Irony

Sunday Sunday Sunday, watch as reigning champion Biiiiiig Money takes on former teammate Rampant Insanity in a all out throw-down grudge match for the fate of  the Republican brand! Your ticket pays for the whole political spectrum, but you'll only need the fringe!

PaulDirks
PaulDirks

I was wondering how long it would take before he finally started speaking his mind.


Preparing for carefully worded walk-back in 5..4..3..2.......

jmac
jmac

Will Fox News drop their War on Christmas and decide there's a War on Conservatives by  "Main Stream" Republicans?   That would be a nice Christmas gift.  


 Will one of these main stream republicans  call a tax a tax or will he  stand up to the National Rifle Association or  trickle-down economic voodoo or a woman's right to choose?   

RobertNguyen
RobertNguyen

The Speaker is absolutely correct in this case and I support him. Ask any conservative  - ask Karl Rove specifically, as a conservative what the hell it is he is conserving????? or just a stooge to the Koch brothers and lining up their pockets...

dectra
dectra

@Hollywooddeed 

No, son. It's because he finally had the stones to tell you baggers to P.O.

TyPollard
TyPollard

@tommyudo

...and before that that GOP was whipping them into a frenzy of paranoia and resentfulness for electoral gain.

This is a Frankenstein of their own creation.

dectra
dectra

@curt3rd 

So, you going to write out a check for 85 Billion?  No, you won't, because you don't have that much. Neither does anyone else who comments here about it being 'small'.

La_Randy
La_Randy

@curt3rd Greece does not have a fiat currency. Educate yourself, then comment.

jmac
jmac

@curt3rd Since Greece got into trouble for not collecting its taxes - you might be right that Republicans can still take us there.  

tom.litton
tom.litton

FYI, us becoming Greece has been a joke for a while now.  It isn't actually possible.

TyPollard
TyPollard

@PaulDirks

I don't know, I don't think it matters. The Tea party are not the forgiving types. 

Yer either fer em or agin em.

Arimathean
Arimathean

@PaulDirks I really hope you're wrong about the walkback, but I am almost certain you're right.

JamesGordon1
JamesGordon1

@RobertNguyen That little  pig  karl  Rove  should  be  in  prison  makin  bankin  with his  cell  mate .......