Open thread: Speaker Boehner to resign from Congress
Speaker John Boehner will resign from his congressional seat in October which will send the House into a swarm for new leadership and a new direction. Boehner had been under increasing pressure from within his caucus to get tougher with President Obama and support efforts to push a more conservative agenda.
Report from the New York Times:
Speaker John A. Boehner, under intense pressure from conservatives in his party, will resign one of the most powerful positions in government and give up his House seat at the end of October, throwing Congress into chaos as it tries to avert a government shutdown.
Mr. Boehner made the announcement in an emotional meeting with his fellow Republicans on Friday morning.
The Ohio representative struggled from almost the moment he took the speaker’s gavel in 2011 to manage the challenges of divided government and to hold together his fractious and increasingly conservative Republican members.
Most recently, Mr. Boehner, 65, was trying to craft a solution to keep the government open through the rest of the year, but was under pressure from a growing base of conservatives who told him that they would not vote for a bill that did not defund Planned Parenthood. Several of those members were on a path to remove Mr. Boehner as speaker, though their ability to do so was far from certain.
Mr. Boehner’s surprise announcement came just a day after Pope Francis visited the Capitol, the fulfillment of a 20-year dream for Mr. Boehner of having a pontiff address Congress. He had a private audience with Francis before the pope’s address to a joint meeting of Congress.
As Boehner resigns and a new Republican takes over as Speaker, there will be a stronger push to confront President Obama and circumstances which could lead to government shutdowns, especially over Planned Parenthood funding. This is where the 2016 presidential race comes in since Republican candidates will be asked about these tactics and whether they support or oppose certain legislation, etc…
Any thoughts on this development? I’m pretty surprised, it seemed like Boehner was going to stay put no matter what but something must have changed recently which made it unbearable for him to try and lead a fractured caucus.