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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Mike Johnson Can’t Control A Headless GOP Chicken

The House Freedom Caucus is largely right about debt and deficits.


The budget deal worked out between Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) and Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) is a middle finger to the forces that orchestrated the ouster of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy. I Photo: Speaker Mike Johnson Facebook



Some members might be hypocrites, given that they had little problem with Donald Trump’s spending when he was president and added $8 trillion to US debt.


They’re also right that the budget deal worked out between Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) and Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) is a middle finger to the forces that orchestrated the ouster of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy, Jonah Goldberg wrote in his column for LA Times.



The primary reason McCarthy had to go — over the objections of 96% of the GOP caucus — was that he agreed to a budget deal that relied on Democratic votes and exceeded the agreed spending caps.


But all of that is beside the point. I’m a big believer in the power of arguments in a democracy, but that argument within Congress matters less than the raw numbers behind who is making the arguments. When Franklin D. Roosevelt entered office,


All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

Democrats had huge majorities in the House: 313 seats to the GOP’s 117. In the Senate, Democrats had 59 seats, the GOP 36. In the next Congress, Democrats had 70 seats in the Senate and 322 in the House.


History gives FDR the lion’s share of the credit for the New Deal.


Government & politics: Politicians, government officials and delegates standing in front of their country flags in a political event in the financial district.

But the simple fact is that little of it would have been possible without these super-majorities in Congress. When you can afford to lose a dozen senators of your own party and nearly 100 representatives in the House on a piece of legislation, it’s easy to get your way. That’s how the system works.


The House Freedom Caucus doesn’t get this. And contrary to what House Freedom Caucus members shout on cable TV, you can’t dictate policy outcomes just because you’re angry — or right.


Business: Business men in suite and tie in a work meeting in the office located in the financial district.

The argument GOP needs to win is at the ballot box. They need Republicans in competitive seats, and lots of them, to win.


That’s because millions of Americans elected Democrats to oppose GOP policies. The idea that a weak House speaker with a tiny and sharply divided majority can overpower the Senate and the White House is childish nonsense.




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