Yahoo asked Ohioans living in the state's 8th congressional district to grade their U.S. House representative, Speaker John Boehner, during the government shutdown. Here's one perspective.
COMMENTARY | I live in Butler County, in the 8th congressional district of Ohio, represented by Speaker Boehner. While I am not registered as a Republican, I have typically voted for Republicans.
At no time in my life would I expect the type of shenanigans going on in Washington to be going on in Washington.
Let me say that I don't agree the Affordable Care Act will do anything positive for health care costs or health insurance costs in this country. I don't believe we should approve having the government repeatedly raise the amount of debt the country carries just because they've already overspent. I believe we need a balanced budget. I don't believe the government shutdown is good for anyone.
Negotiating and figuring out what is the best for the majority is what governing is about. Refusing to negotiate until you get everything you want is not what the citizens of the United States expect from their leaders. The trick now is to figure out who is actually creating the problem and make better decisions at the next election so we get more balance in the Senate and House of Representatives. We can't wait until 2016 for the White House to change.
Here is how I see things: Speaker Boehner and the Republicans have said repeatedly that they do not agree with the Affordable Care Act. Speaker Boehner has made it clear that he and tea party Republicans in the House want spending cuts. Speaker Boehner and tea party Republicans speak for a large percentage of Americans on these issues. Yet, President Obama refuses to address or give value to their views, other than to say the government won't be held hostage. His public responses to these demands are derogatory and dismissive. Meanwhile, Speaker Boehner's tactics are the only way to get concessions.
On Thursday, he announced a new plan to address the debt ceiling. Again, he asks that the president and Senate Democrats come to the table. Earlier that day, the White House indicated the president would not fully negotiate with Republicans until the debt ceiling was raised and the government was reopened:
"Once Republicans in Congress act to remove the threat of default and end this harmful government shutdown, the president will be willing to negotiate on a broader budget agreement to create jobs, grow the economy and put our fiscal house in order. While we are willing to look at any proposal Congress puts forward to end these manufactured crises, we will not allow a faction of the Republicans in the House to hold the economy hostage to its extraneous and extreme political demands."
So basically what the White House is saying is, “Once I get everything I want, then I will be willing to talk.” What would be left to talk about? What leverage would be there to encourage negotiations?
Not sure what is next for Speaker Boehner. I hope he and the Tea Party Republicans stand their ground. At some point, the president will have to do his job and open negotiations further.
- Politics & Government
- Budget, Tax & Economy
- John Boehner
- government shutdown