|An open letter to John Boehner|
|Dear Mr. Speaker:|
Recently you met with Barack Obama and concluded he is not serious about making meaningful spending cuts and budgeting reforms that are desperately needed to the nation's economic challenges.
I am surprised it took you this long to recognize a reality so obvious to most of us.
But better late than never.
Now that you understand there is no bargaining with Obama or the Democrats in the Senate, why are you still doing just that? Isn't it about time you realize that you and your House Republican majority are holding all the cards necessary to force the cuts and reforms that we need?
Most House Republicans are prepared right now to say no to raising the debt limit. And if House Republicans say no, the answer is no. It means no more borrowing – period. It spells real cuts of about $1 trillion this year – not $4 trillion over 10 years. It means no more Obamacare. It means no more unconstitutional Department of Education. It means no more Planned Parenthood subsidies. It means no more NPR and PBS funding. It means the end of programs and even departments and agencies Republicans have rhetorically opposed for 30 years.
This is your opportunity to go down in history as a great House speaker – to take a stand for the Constitution, for limited government, for fiscal sanity and for no more borrowing.
Can I ask you, Mr. Speaker, what are you waiting for?
Saying no to more borrowing does not mean default on loan obligations. It simply means forcing the Democrats to do what they will never do through cajoling, through negotiating or through compromise.
It's time to stop cutting piecemeal. It is getting us nowhere. It is not responsible to keep borrowing – even if means borrowing less than in the past. You can't fix a debt problem through more borrowing. Deal-making with the Democrats now only means continuing business as usual.
Is conducting business as the reason you wanted to be speaker of the House?
I don't know if you are counting heads within your own House majority, but I am.
By my count, 142 House Republicans are already firmly lined up to vote no on raising the debt limit. In other words, the only way you can pass it as speaker is by siding with the Democrats. You've got to change your position on this or you have no bargaining leverage with those who want to keep the borrowing-and-spending machine running.
I don't know how to say this anymore plainly: You are on the wrong side of this issue. And if you persist in giving the Democrats the cover they need to continue borrowing, they will never be serious about cutting spending.
In fact, there is only one thing you can do as speaker to get the Democrats to cut spending – say no to raising the debt limit. Listen to your fellow House Republicans. Listen to your constituents. This is not a time for timidity and halfway measures. It's not a time for business as usual. This is a time for decisive and bold action designed to save our country from bankruptcy and economic ruin.
I hope your eyes were opened in your meeting with Obama.
I hope you recognize how he took you to the cleaners with another continuing resolution compromise.
I hope you recognize what you are up against.
I hope you realize that Democrats are not about to suddenly become fiscally responsible.
Use the only weapon you have to force reform and responsibility.
Shift the debate away from these continuing resolutions and government shutdowns to the bigger picture: It's time to stop borrowing altogether and start forcing the kind of cuts that can get Washington back on track.