Over at The Week today, I detail the “5 bogus Republican arguments to justify a government shutdown.”
It may not surprise readers of this blog that “Obama won’t negotiate,” “Republicans have already compromised” and “Harry Reid is the one who shut down the government” are not accurate statements. And if you’ve been watching the devolution of the Republican Party over the past decade, you know that these sorts of “up is down” arguments are standard Republican practice.
Still, it is stupefying that Republicans would dare enter into a high-stakes battle like a shutdown standoff, not to mention the looming debt default game of chicken, firing so many blanks.
It appears that most elected Republicans are not completely delusional. One Tea Party congressman admitted that most in his caucus would vote for a bill that funds the government without demanding delays in Obamacare.
But the Tea Party tail wagging this dog seems to really believe that the country will rally to their side and force President Obama to junk his signature legislative achievement.
This is the monster that’s been created by years of conservative movement mendacity. Lie after lie has been pumped into the conservative grassroots in hopes of seeing them bleed into the broader discourse. Often it works, but now we see the cost. Republicans are on the verge of political suicide, throwing away the strong possibility of taking over the entire Congress in 2014 in pursuit of a fantasy, because the conservative talk radio nation believes its own hype.