|Is this what you're offering, GOP?|
Eighteen months before the 2012 national election and one thing is perfectly clear: the Republican party is in a shambles. There are no leaders who can speak for the party on national issues. Contention within the party is causing it to take insane positions.
With economic conditions being what they are right now (8.9% unemployment, gas prices at the $4/gallon mark) one would think there would be a full clutch of Republicans lining up to run against the President. But the party is so fractured and divided within itself that no leader has yet managed to find the political sweet spot that appeals to the various warring factions. And apart from Mitt Romney, bless his heart, none seem eager to try. (Good ol' boy Haley Barbour just today eliminated himself from consideration.)
The party's lack of leadership is so glaring that a few weeks ago, when "The Donald" started fanning the nativist flames, he shot to the top of GOP polls. (Sarah, honey, you're just so yesterday.)
Speaker Boehner, the most powerful Republican in the country, is acutely aware of the bitter divide within his party. He's the poor sap who has to deal with the Tea Party caucus. You know? The same folks who threatened to shut down the federal government unless funding for Planned Parenthood and National Public Radio was halted? So tenuous is Boehner's leadership that no one is certain he will be able to rein in the radicals enough to allow Congress to extend the federal debt ceiling in July. (Go here to read how the thieving bastards at Standard & Poor's issued a "negative" outlook on the long-term U.S. bond rating.) Boehner has to thread the needle. The big budget deal only happened due to his Herculean efforts.
But with none of its potential presidential candidates catching fire, and its leaders in Congress expending all their energy trying to hold the party together, the GOP finds itself promoting policies that are insanely unpopular. Defending tax cuts for upper incomes. Advocating to abolish popular entitlement programs.
It sure would suck to be a Republican right now.
But, if you like your humor black as coffee, it is amusing to watch.