Leaked emails have depicted Speaker John Boehner as conspiring with Harry Reid over how best to exempt Congress from the individual mandate.
One email even appears to show that Speaker Boehner’s office deliberated over an idea to disguise a meeting on the individual mandate with President Barack Obama as a meeting on immigration reform, National Review Online reported.
People’s Pundit Daily has not been able to reach the man in question for comment, but reportedly Boehner chief of staff Mike Sommers, wrote on July 17 “We can’t let it get out there that this is for [Boehner] and [Reid] to ask the President to carve us out of the requirement of Obamacare. This is a little bit more difficult because it isn’t a routing meeting because [House Minority Leader Nancy] Pelosi and [Senate Minority Leader Mitch] McConnell won’t be there,” wrote Sommers.
“I am even ok if it is the President hauling us down to talk about the next steps on immigration,” he added. Whether or not this is the result of one seriously unethical chief of staff or Boehner himself, is not yet determined.
“The only memory I have of him talking about this is about how we could screw them with it,” one senior lawmaker told National Review. The emails were leaked Tuesday by Reid chief of staff David Krone, which actually both adds to and subtracts from this story’s credibility, because Krone has a habit of dumping cherry-picked emails in an effort to paint his opponent in a less than favorable light. In September of 2012, just prior to the elections, he had deployed a similar tactic with Sen. Dean Heller (R), who was then-locked in a contentious election for Nevada’s other Senate seat. Heller did go on to win.
“I’ve never seen anything like it before. I don’t know how David thinks anyone on either side of the aisle will ever be able to work with him again. I guess this is part of Harry Reid’s plan: He refuses to talk with Republicans so I guess his chief of staff figures he doesn’t need to be able to do so either,” one GOP aide told National Review Online, while another said, “He’s a low-rent, self-dealing bagman.”
David Krone, as usual, isn’t sitting around while people on the Hill trash him to the media.
“Every time one of these anonymous Republican aides takes a look at their paycheck, I hope they remember it was Harry Reid who protected their employer contribution. They and their bosses are welcome to return it if they’re so outraged. I took the action I did because I refuse to stand by and watch those who pressed for this ruling turn around and attack the very thing they asked for, simply because they don’t have the courage to stand up to a few whiners in their caucus. Integrity means owning in public what you advocate for in private,” Krone said.
This tory certainly raises eyebrows and, in fact, is giving the idea to some that perhaps they should revisit the story about Boehner last month, which claimed that he advised the White House in September on how to win Republican votes for U.S. military action in Syria.
The report was ultimately found to lack substantive evidence, and perhaps this story will, as well. If it is true, however, then establishment Republicans will have a lot to answer for to the Republican base, as well as the rest of the American people.
The Republican basis for shutting down the government was contingent upon the idea that Obamacare was, and is, unfair for treating two classes of citizens completely different under the law. If it turns out that Speaker Boehner and Beltway Republicans were negotiating with the Democrats to figure out how and when to exempt themselves from the “train-wreck” of a law, then it could spell disaster for Speaker John Boehner and, indeed, the Republican Party.
Blowback for the government shutting down will be nothing compared to what hypocritical can do for party image, far more so than any manufactured, adverse reaction to a government shutdown. You can read about how and why that theory is debunked, by clicking here.
Again, on the other hand, it could turn out to be misleading at best. But there is an old adage that says, “Where there is smoke, there is fire,” for a reason.