December 15, 2013

I have no idea why Fox's Brit Hume believes that House Speaker John Boehner is any better position now than he was back in October, since he's known he was going to face a primary challenge of his own for some time now, but that's the line he expected the audience to believe on this week's Fox News Sunday.

WALLACE: Well, Brit, we talked about it with Paul Ryan. Speaker Boehner seemed to go out of his way this week to hammer some of these conservative groups that from the outside opposed the budget deal. And he says that those groups are using his Republican members to build the organizations and raise money. What's going on here?

HUME: There is a war within the Republican Party and there is a certain set of outside groups, which have opposed so many things that the Republicans have tried to do, and actually pass, and who are satisfied with nothing that you could ever get through the Senate or past the president. And there is enough people in the country with money in their pockets who went to spend on politics who will keep these groups flush as long as they keep up their opposition and it's worked very well for them. And they've had a real effect.

WALLACE: Don't you think it's helpful for Boehner to take them on?

HUME: Well, I think it may embolden his caucus to some extent. He was not strong enough to do that during the round of negotiations that led to the shutdown. And so, he let them have their way and they tried this defund strategy that led to the shutdown. He feared that it would be unpopular, as indeed it turned out to be and they'd get nothing out of it, which is exactly what happened. And I think a lot of his members learned that lesson now. He's going to take them on. But look at what's happened over the Senate. Mitch McConnell, the leader there, who I don't know if he's any more sympathetic, in fact, maybe he's even less sympathetic to these groups than Boehner is, is not going to vote for this budget deal because he has got a primary challenger. And that's what they all worry about, and that's where these groups have an effect.

I think Boehner's Wall Street and corporate donors finally got sick and tired of the games and brinksmanship from the Republicans and told them they'd had enough.

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