The Day John Boehner (and the GOP) Went Nuts

| Thu Nov. 5, 2009 12:53 PM PST

At today's small Tea Party rally on Capitol Hill, as a few thousand right wing activists railed against the emerging health care reform legislation, Republican House minority leader John Boehner came before the angry crowd (and its signs declaring the president a "red" and a "traitor") and declared that the health care bill is the "greatest threat to freedom that I have seen."

The greatest? Greater than Hitler's Nazism? Greater than Soviet communism?

With this remark, Boehner steered his GOP congressional caucus—and many members of it spoke at this Republican-supported rally—into the center of the wing-nut wing of his party. Two days after a moderate GOPer and a faux moderate GOPer won their respective gubernatorial races in New Jersey and Virginia—and a true-blue conservative Republican lost a congressional race in relatively conservative upstate New York—Boehner is doubling down with the Glenn Beck-following, Obama-hating extremists of the conservative movement. No wonder that the strategists at Democratic Party HQ have been saying, Thank you, Michele Bachmann. She's turned the No. 1 Republican in the House into a Tea Party stooge.

You can follow David Corn's postings and media appearances via Twitter. More coverage of the Tea Party rally from Mother Jones' Stephanie Mencimer is coming soon.

Get Mother Jones by Email - Free. Like what you're reading? Get the best of MoJo three times a week.