Speaker of the House John Boehner has a job that no one in their right mind would envy–being leader of the Republican Party in the House of Representatives, when the Tea Party Movement has taken over a good portion of the Republican caucus, and is out to destroy any possibility of any Congressional action on just about anything, unless it fits their extremist right wing philosophy!..
Boehner has been heavily criticized on all political fronts of the left and the right, of the Democrats and Republicans, for trying to maintain some semblance of order, decorum, and discipline in the House.
Boehner is not exactly a likeable character, but one can sympathize with the burden he carries, and he has shown willingness four times this year to move legislation that does NOT have a majority of his party willing to back by their votes.
Boehner has pushed legislation with a minority of Republicans and a majority of Democrats in the following circumstances:
Passage of the “fiscal cliff” legislation in January of this year.
Hurricane Sandy relief vote in January.
Extension of the Violence Against Women Act vote in February.
Federal acquisition of historic sites vote in April.
Now Boehner has the most challenging situation, whether to allow an immigration reform vote, when the majority of his House majority will be bitterly against it, while Boehner has been supportive of immigration reform in his past career as a Congressman from Cincinnati, Ohio.
California Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has threatened to call for a vote to unseat Boehner as House Speaker if he calls for such a vote.
So Boehner has to decide to gamble his Speakership on this matter–choosing between his own career, and doing the right thing, something which would revive Republican fortunes with the growing Hispanic-Latino community in America, and also just doing what is fair and just for eleven million people, many born here, and others coming only for economic betterment, not to commit crimes, which only a miniscule number have engaged in over the years!
Is the Speakership that important? Does not John Boehner secretly wish he could give up the burden, which has become a nightmare with the lunatic Congressmen and some Senators of his party who have set out to destroy the historical reputation of the party of Lincoln, TR, and Ike?
The conclusion of the author is that Boehner will allow a vote, and immigration reform will pass the House, if a large majority of the Senate, including Republicans, pass a bill.
And if that happens, and even if Boehner loses his Speakership, we will be able to add Boehner to the list of people who have been a “Profile in Courage”, as John F. Kennedy termed it in his Pulitzer Prize winning book in 1956!