The Tea Party faction in the House is attempting to destroy constitutional government.
Let’s get a couple of facts straight.
These 80 Tea Party members in the House holding the government hostage are nuts - that’s Number One and here’s why:
1. Their strategy to defund the Affordable Care Act cannot work because most of the money to implement the law is already in place and being used by the States to setup and operate the exchanges.
2. The Democrats have already compromised on a Continuing Resolution that locks in the Sequestration Cuts from earlier this year. That’s the “Clean” Continuing Resolution that Beohner now refuses to put up for a vote. So, having already won the concessions they demanded throughout the year, the Tea Party refuses to accept the victory. At this point, there is simply nothing more the Democrats can give to Republicans.
3. Since it is up to President Obama to determine which agencies are most affected by the shutdown, most of those initial costs are probably being heavily targeted at those 80 congressional districts the Tea Party represents. Therefore, the constituents most harmed by the Tea Party are the Tea Party members, themselves.
4. Traditional Republican financial supporters like the US Chamber of Commerce and the Business Round table have already indicated their displeasure with the current shutdown and their alarm at what a default on the National Debt might mean. While these two groups go out of their way to avoid formally blaming either party generally, the fact that they don’t blame Democrats or the White House specifically, means they are most unhappy with the Tea Party faction of their traditional ally, the Republican Party, in particular. This displeasure can only result in reduced campaign contributions to the Republican Party.
5. Finally, and most importantly, this tactic of using a routine piece of legislation to blackmail the rest of the government for concessions that cannot be given, and to disable the government from performing its basic and mandated functions, is tantamount to an act of nullification. The Tea Party minority in the House is attempting to repeal a law outside the legislative, judicial and executive processes of constitutional government.
The Tea Party is committing an act of sabotage, at best, and treason, at worst. That’s fact Number Two. The only other times something like this has happened is when Southern States refused to enforce the tariff laws of the 1830‘s, resulting in a showdown with President Jackson and the US Navy; the second was Civil War, when Southern States decided they did not have to accept the results of a national election; and the third was when Federal troops were sent into Southern states to enforce desegregation in schools, as a result of Brown v Board of Education. In each case, it was necessary for the Federal Government to use force to bring order back out of potential chaos, created by errant states.
And now, we have the spectacle of the House refusing to fund laws which they have already passed. The question is: what sort of force will it be necessary to employ in order to bring these anarchists to heel?