An important footnote

The Republicans have had a principle for a number of years that a Republican Speaker would only bring forth legislation that had a majority of the majority.  I.e., only if a majority of the Republican caucus supported a bill would the Speaker allow a vote to be held on it.  Good for Boehner for doing the right thing and emphatically breaking with the principle last night:

The measure, brought to the House floor less than 24 hours after its passage in the Senate, passed 257 to 167 with 85 Republicans joining 172 Democrats in voting to allow income taxes to rise for the first time in two decades, in this case for the highest-earning Americans. Voting no were 151 Republicans and 16 Democrats.

I presume we’ll shortly see all sorts of speculation on what this means for Boehner’s future as Speaker.  And let’s just be clear, those Republicans were voting against extending lower taxes to 99% or so of Americans because they objected to the increase on the 1%.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

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