This CNN story acknowledges that, yes, it does seem quite possible that Republicans will throw sand in the gears of government in the next two years. But you can't blame them, because it's really not their fault:
... Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham warned Obama could spark a backlash over immigration.
"If he goes it alone he is going to run into the ire of the American people," Graham said, though said Congress also had a responsibility to act....
GOP leaders are already braced for pressure from the right for a tangible and not merely symbolic reflex when the president acts.
"If the president moves forward and does his executive action, the Republicans have no choice but to respond," said Dan Holler, communications director of Heritage Action for America, a conservative non profit group.
"That response needs to be legislative. The vehicle that makes most sense is denying funding for the activity that they say is unconstitutional and inappropriate." ...
Obama's immigration move is certain to ignite a firestorm of grass roots conservative anger. That will in turn pile pressure on rank-and-file Republican House members who campaigned for office slamming what they see as an imperial president....
Nothing worries Republicans in deeply conservative districts more than the prospect of a primary challenge, and many simply cannot afford not to mount the kind of rowdy response to Obama which will rock Boehner's restive caucus....
Executive orders on immigration will also detonate as the 2016 presidential race dawns, trapping Republicans between the party's activist base and a desire to engage Hispanic voters vital to GOP White House hopes....
Paragraph after paragraph of this story portrays Republicans, once again, as helpless prisoners of their voter base, of right-wing activist groups, and even of "the American people" overall. Republicans don't want to be obstructionist -- they have no choice! They're "under pressure"! Left to their own devices, they'd make deals like crazy!
And, we're told, this puts the poor dears at great risk:
Republican anger is however masking a serious problem the party has yet to resolve : how to hit back at what it sees a presidential power grab.
Other than warning that Obama would "poison the well" for future cooperation, GOP leaders won't say whether they will use pending federal funding bills as leverage.
That route led to a damaging government shutdown for which the GOP paid a heavy political price last year.
This story comes to my attention via BooMan, who writes:
Tell me, please, exactly how the GOP paid "a heavy political price" for shutting down the government and hurting our credit rating. They just had a huge victory in the Senate elections, the exact kind of statewide elections where politicians are supposed to be punished for pandering to the worst extremists in their party. They paid no political price and were, in fact, richly rewarded for their irresponsible behavior.
And if there is one single dominant reason for why the GOP got away with acting like five year-old bullies, it is because the media never mentioned their behavior in the 60 days leading up to the elections. If a tree falls in the forest and the only sound heard is about the Ebola virus and ISIS, then no one knows that a tree fell in the forest.
If the media had actually had a discussion about how a Republican-led Congress was likely to behave, then what's coming wouldn't be such a surprise to people.
Mainstream journalists didn't bring up the shutdown (or GOP intransigence in general) because they found the GOP's "Obama wants ISIS and Ebola to kill Americans" narrative more appealing -- but insider journalists also didn't mention the shutdown because they still think the shutdown wasn't a reflection of the "real" Republican Party. To the media, the shutdown was the work of a bunch of crazies who forced it on the party's congressional leadership and "establishment" members, all of whom were helpless to resist.
And the establishment types are being called helpless again in this story. It's never their fault. Therefore, Republicans are never responsible for their own behavior.
That's awfully convenient for them, isn't it?
Crossposted at No. More Mr. Nice Blog