(Note: For the purposes of this diary, I'm talking mostly of politics rather than policy).
So they embarrassed their speaker last night, eh? Honestly it was a dumb ploy by Boehner anyway, I'm surprised that many Republicans signed on to be honest. I mean think about it--they're signing on to tax increases that have no chance of passing.
Obama gets savaged a lot from some of us sometimes, but think about it. By the time this is over REPUBLICANS would've been complicit in "tax raises". Oddly enough, Obama almost voluntarily signed Dem's onto Social Security cuts.
Anyway, the main purpose of this diary is that the shrill, talk-radio, redstate types have a sizable hold on congress. Not a majority, but sizable enough. GOP leadership has been happy to take advantage of them and ride the wave, but that has been at the expense of taking extreme positions on everything and on losing national elections. They let the plant take hold instead of nipping it in the bud when they had a chance. Apologizing to Limbaugh, threatening US default, self-deportation, etc. It's all coming home to roost now. They can't moderate. It's impossible. Almost any moderating will bring a swift rebuke from Erik Eriksson, Rush Limbaugh, Heritage et. al., and their base. Before leadership could pay lip service. But now the radio-talk show hosts and the tea party actually have legistlators in Washington who answer to them, above and beyond Boehner or McConnell. Whether they want to moderate or not is not the issue. They simply can't. And it must be very paralyzing on their leadership. Watch for this dynamic to repeat on guns and on immigration.
Now they're imploding on a bomb of their own making. Good. Let the Democratic party govern, while they sort out their own mess.