John Boehner and the Lunatic Fringe

| Fri Sep. 23, 2011 12:17 AM EDT

Susan Davis and Major Garrett describe John Boehner's reaction after losing a floor vote because 48 Republicans refused to vote for it:

Boehner was described as "spitting nails" during a closed-door member meeting on Wednesday, and his harsh talk demonstrated that the usually unflappable speaker is reaching something close to a breaking point with his internally divided conference.

Those close to Boehner said there is a growing anger in the leadership that some in the freshman class and other intractable conservatives pay no mind to the legislative dangers of abandoning leadership—especially at a time when Democrats feel as if they and President Obama are fighting for their political lives.

....In private, Boehner has grown tired of what he dismissively calls the "know-it-alls who have all the right answers." Boehner knew what a defeat would mean—a more costly spending bill, one that provides more emergency disaster relief and contains fewer budget offsets.

It was all kind of fun back when these guys were threatening the financial reputation of the country over the debt ceiling, wasn't it? Of course, that's because it seemed like President Obama might get the blame, and wrecking our credit rating was well worth it as long as it cost Obama a few points in the polls. But guess what? People with that kind of glassy-eyed fervor aren't especially reliable allies. I guess Boehner is finally figuring that out.

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