Asymmetrical Power Dynamics

Brother Benen and Greg Sargent are all over a bizarre series of statements by John Boehner yesterday arguing that Senate Democrats don’t have a “plan” for replacing the sequester because they haven’t enacted one. And why haven’t they enacted one? Because Republicans have filibustered every effort to do so!

Yes, this is an example of Boehner’s mendacity, and to the extent that many MSM observers never call him on this sort of thing, of the effects of the false equivalency syndrome whereby whatever “he said” is as valid as whatever “she said,” underlying facts be damned.

But speaking of underlying facts: it’s important in looking forward to keep in mind that control of the House is a more powerful political asset than control of the Senate because it carries with it a vastly greater ability to pass legislation in the “controlled” chamber. Unless and until filibuster reform occurs, a party with a majority in the House and 41 senators is in a largely unassailable defensive position so long as it can maintain unity and deal with the consequences of public opinion.

Support the Washington Monthly and get a FREE subscription

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.