With a 260-167 vote on Thursday afternoon, the House approved the shutdown-averting budget compromise negotiated last week by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the White House, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). But 59 House Republicans voted no, meaning Boehner needed dozens of Democrats to vote yes — "a stunning blow to his leadership," considering his earlier pledge to pass the deal without needing any Democrats, says Brian Beutler at Talking Points Memo. Did Boehner win the vote, but lose his caucus?
Yes, Boehner has a real leadership problem: This budget deal is going to "really hurt Boehner's credibility and his relationship to the Tea Party," says David Dayen at Firedoglake. House Republicans were going to reluctantly swallow the package when it was $38.5 billion in cuts. But thanks to the Congressional Budget Office's latest tally, we now know the real savings are a fraction of that. "Given this feeling of betrayal" among his caucus, I don't see how he'll lead them to accept other deals.
"House passes 2011 funding bill, needs Dem votes to do it"
No, Boehner is even stronger now: "The easy Washington spin on this is something like 'Boehner can't even control his caucus!'" says David Weigel at Slate. But that's a "pretty uninteresting" take, since he was always going to lose some number of hardcore Tea Party "rebels." In fact, if you "think about the bigger picture," roping in 81 Democrats lets Boehner crow about "bipartisan buy-in." And that's "why he's winning" in Washington.
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The Tea Party is the big loser: Next time Boehner says "he can't do a deal without the support of 218 Republicans," we now know he's "bluffing," says Jed Lewison at Daily Kos. But the most puzzling thing is that Tea Party Republicans so gleefully "sidelined themselves into irrelevancy." After all, now that Boehner has shown he can push through bills without them, "what possible relevance do they have" to the next round of negotiations?
"Boehner turns to Democrats to pass funding bill to avert shutdown"