BOEHNER BELIEVES HIS OWN BULL…. House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) had an interesting chat with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos yesterday, with the GOP leader talking a bit about the party’s future.
Boehner conceded that his party has been in a “deep hole” lately. “We took it in the shorts with Bush-Cheney, the Iraq War, and by sacrificing fiscal responsibility to hold power,” he said, adding that Republicans have also struggled to shake the “party of no” label.
But Boehner also talked about his optimism for the future, and his belief that he’s found President Obama’s weak spot.
Boehner believes it’s national security. “This thing is real,” he said. Watch for more tough votes on Guantanamo, interrogation memos and photos — and a big push on the issue emerging today: the Obama Justice Department admission that some detainees have been read their Miranda rights. “I think most Americans will be appalled that we’re providing Miranda rights to terrorists,” Boehner predicted. “This thing is going to bubble up big.”
It’s certainly possible that Boehner’s right, and this issue will, in fact, “bubble up big.” Some of the other issues that have “bubbled up big” — the DHS report on right-wing radicals, detainees at Guantanamo Bay — have several things in common, including the baseless nature of the accusations, the connection to national security, the apoplexy among far-right voices on Fox News and talk radio, and the reluctance of most political reporters to acknowledge how wrong the claims are.
To that end, reality may not have any bearing on the debate, but let’s at least try to remember that the attack is absurd. As Jake Tapper reported yesterday, the Obama administration is using the same policy used by the Bush administration, and no less an authority than Gen. David Petraeus has already dismissed the right-wing attacks as untrue.
And yet, the same day Boehner was calling this nonsense “real,” we had Newt Gingrich and Sean Hannity calling the administration’s policy “unimaginable.”
In other words, Republicans have picked a new toy to play with, and they’re hoping, once again, that Americans won’t know that they’re lying. It’s the height of cynicism, and it’s politics at its most insulting, but it’s worked before.