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Fuck You, He Explained

Apparently, John Boehner was somewhat displeased with the negotiating process.

House Speaker John Boehner couldn’t hold back when he spotted Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the White House lobby last Friday.

It was only a few days before the nation would go over the fiscal cliff, no bipartisan agreement was in sight, and Reid had just publicly accused Boehner of running a “dictatorship” in the House and caring more about holding onto his gavel than striking a deal.

“Go f— yourself,” Boehner sniped as he pointed his finger at Reid, according to multiple sources present.

Reid, a bit startled, replied: “What are you talking about?”

Boehner repeated: “Go f— yourself.”

The story never does explain what precisely triggered this negotiating position. Certainly, it’s nothing Reid hasn’t heard before.

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About James Joyner
James Joyner is the publisher of Outside the Beltway, an associate professor of security studies at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. He has a PhD in political science from The University of Alabama. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter.

Comments

  1. JoshB says:

    And then Boehner punted to the Senate, allowing the final bill to be less of what Boehner wanted and more of what Reid wanted. Well done, Boehner!

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 1

  2. swearyanthony says:

    I thought an earlier version of the story said it was Reid saying Boehner was running the house “like a dictator” at a press conference that triggered it. Or it could have been caused by Boehner realizing he’s the nominal frontman for a bunch of crazy people.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  3. Tony W says:

    Classy guy as always…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  4. DC Loser says:

    Boehner is surprised by how this turned out? He expected Obama and the Dems to roll over and die? He must have been watching Foxnews again. He could have avoided all this drama if he’d made the deal (a much better one for him) with Obama a few weeks ago, but he wanted to grandstand a little more and demonstrate his “leadership.” Oh well, you live by the sword…..

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  5. James H says:

    When I commuted on the slug line, I once caught a ride with a guy who used to work on Capitol Hill. He said that while sniping between the parties could be very bad, it was nothing compared to the clashes between House and Senate.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  6. OldSouth says:

    ‘Certainly, it’s nothing Reid hasn’t heard before.’

    With good reason…

    Actually some 16 trillion good reasons, with several trillion more coming down the road to our children.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 31

  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Certainly, it’s nothing Reid hasn’t heard before.

    Hence his “For what this time?” question.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @OldSouth:

    Actually some 16 trillion good reasons, with several trillion more coming down the road to our children.

    So…. From 2000 to 2006 you never once voted Republican. Right? Really?? And you thought Bill Clinton (he of the balanced budget he bequeathed to W) was the best thing since sliced bread…

    Got it.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 2

  9. george says:

    I couldn’t help but think that a large portion of the population would like to say that to both of them. And it probably wouldn’t hurt either of them to hear it more often.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  10. cd6 says:

    You left out the best part of this whole article:

    The harsh exchange just a few steps from the Oval Office — which Boehner later bragged about to fellow Republicans — was only one episode in nearly two months of high-stakes negotiations laced with distrust, miscommunication, false starts and yelling matches as Washington struggled to ward off $500 billion in tax hikes and spending

    Bragged to his buddies? What, is he 8 years old?

    Truly, history will look back at Boehner, the orange man willing to use swears while leading his congress of monkeys to the brink of insolvency, and judge him a wise and brilliant leader

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1

  11. gVOR08 says:

    James, sorry to go off topic, but I’m catching up after vacation and holidays. If you’re still wondering why everyone thinks VandeHei and Allen are hacks, and don’t need to have the nature of hackdom explained in detail:
    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/11/delusions-of-wisdom/
    The fact is that our Very Serious People hold a strong consensus that is often more self serving than correct.

    On topic, Boehner should be happy. There’s a fair chance Reid, along with Obama, Biden, and McConnell, have saved his speaker-ship by demonstrating that a) he can be part of a governing coalition w/out the Tea Party, and b) no one else should want the job.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  12. C. Clavin says:

    Confucious say; “A man who cannot control his caucus will be left cursing out men who can control their caucus.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  13. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @gVOR08:

    There are some remarkable economic assertions in here. That great economist Jeb Bush — yes, Jeb Bush — is quoted as declaring that ending structural deficits would boost the growth rate hugely; this would come as news to any economist I know. And, um, aren’t our structural deficits largely the result of his brother’s policies?

    Heh.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  14. @James H: Reminds me of a line from “The West Wing”:

    LEO: There was a freshman democrat who came to Congress 50 years ago. He turned to a senior Democrat and said, “Where are the Republicans? I want to meet the enemy. The senior Democrat said, “The Republicans aren’t the enemy. They’re the opposition. The Senate is the enemy.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  15. legion says:

    Apparently, Boehner was too busy tracking down Reid to give him a piece of his mind to get a vote on Hurricane Sandy relief to the floor.

    I propose that people run out of their houses or otherwise inconvenienced by Sandy be allowed to burn Republicans to stay warm.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  16. Herb says:

    Deserved or not, that’s childish and unprofessional.

    In other words, vintage Boehner.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  17. Stan Williams III says:

    The crazy people are the ones who think you can spend $1.2 trillion a year, borrowed from generations yet unborn, ad infinitum.

    What’s the over-under on America’s default and economic collapse in liberal circles? 2020?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 13

  18. Stan Williams III says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Instead of trying to lay blame on W (and crazy spender he was) or have BJ take credit for the Gingrich/Kasich House budgets (the authors of the Clinton surplus, along with the tech boom)…

    Why don’t we try to figure out how to address the CATASTROPHIC deficits of $1.2 trillion a year, every year from now until the Weimar Republic?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 14

  19. legion says:

    @Stan Williams III: To look at just one aspect of your statement, if we were to somehow magically eliminate the deficit (or, FSM forbid, the actual national debt) without utterly destroying society, it would have pretty much _zero_ impact on unemployment. But if we were to address our national crisis in employment and wage stagnation, that would get more people to work, at better salaries, thereby driving increases in both consumer spending and government revenues _without_ creating an America with no social mobility or safety net.

    In other words, try reading a basic macroeconomics text some time before you just parrot teahadist talking points.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  20. rudderpedals says:

    @Stan Williams III: …Weimar Republic

    Right, with 1000%+ inflation and these massive war reparations America is heading right down the path to the Wiemar. You’re freaking out over a confabulation.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  21. An Interested Party says:

    Actually some 16 trillion good reasons, with several trillion more coming down the road to our children.

    The crazy people are the ones who think you can spend $1.2 trillion a year, borrowed from generations yet unborn, ad infinitum.

    Your concern is touching, if a bit late, as this kind of thing has been going on since Reagan was president, and that was over 30 years ago…

    Meanwhile, it is hilarious that Boehner would say this to Reid, as Boehner has done the same thing to himself with the way he has completely botched this whole process…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  22. Stan Williams III says:

    @legion: Again, I’d like a guess from you.

    How much longer can the U.S. continue to ring up $1.2 trillion annual deficits before the system collapses? According to the CBO, their computer models crash in less than 20 years.

    Or do you think that we can continue to borrow from our children and grandchildren with no repercussions?

    If so, please get Rogoff and Reinhart’s book “This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly”.

    The math always wins out over the politics. You liberals ought to drum that into your heads, because the people you claim you want to protect — seniors, the poor, residents of the inner-cities — are going to be crushes when the system collapse. And collapse it will. Because the math always wins.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  23. Stan Williams III says:

    @An Interested Party: Let me guess: your first reaction to seeing a small fire in the corner of your house is to pour gasoline on it. Because that’s what President Obama did to the deficit.

    Yes, the Reagan era touched off an immense spending binge. But, remember: he was dealing with a Democrat Congress that refused his efforts at sane fiscal policy. Recall, for instance, that he tried to eliminate entire Departments (e.g., Dept. of Education) and was pilloried by the Democrats and media for doing so.

    Suffice it to say, however, that both parties are to blame for profligate spending. That said, the entire house is afire now. The system will not survive this much longer.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  24. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    Why don’t we try to figure out how to address the CATASTROPHIC deficits of $1.2 trillion a year, every year from now until the Weimar Republic?

    Sure Stan. As soon as you explain to me why in Dog’s name I would want to work with someone who won’t even acknowledge that 80% of our deficit is directly attributable to GOP policies, enacted by GOP Congresses, and signed into law by a GOP president!.

    When you come up with a convincing reason, let me know. Until then, please just accept the blame you and your party have earned.

    Oh, while you are at it, come up with a reason why I should listen to the people who blew up the economy on economics.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  25. george says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    Yes, the Reagan era touched off an immense spending binge. But, remember: he was dealing with a Democrat Congress that refused his efforts at sane fiscal policy. Recall, for instance, that he tried to eliminate entire Departments (e.g., Dept. of Education) and was pilloried by the Democrats and media for doing so.

    I don’t remember the Democratic Congress pushing for his big increases in spending though – they were pretty happy with the status quo (which wasn’t great, but was better than the huge new spending he introduced). It was awhile ago though, so maybe I’m wrong, but I recall noting at the time that he was introducing a lot of new spending (military for instance).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  26. legion says:

    @Stan Williams III: The math wins, but you are not the one who gets to define the numbers. When a country is in a recession, it pretty much _has_ to get through it via deficit spending. The time to pay down that accumulated debt is during boom times, when the gov’t ought to be running a surplus. One of the (numerous) reasons this recession has been going on so long is that the last time we had a surplus, we continued to _increase_ spending, accelerating debt growth. But to go into austerity mode _now_, when we’re already floundering, is tantamount to amputating the leg of a patient with a sucking chest wound.

    Yes, we need to fix the debt, but it’s not mathematically possible to do that with so much of the population dependent on the social safety nets that cost us so much. The rational way to deal with gov’t spending is to get people back to work, not to throw those people overboard.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  27. NickTamere says:

    @Stan Williams III: my suggestions:

    1) Significant cuts to the military budget.
    2) Institute single payer healthcare, & allow government to negotiate drug prices for medicare. This will have a huge effect on the deficit.
    3) Return upper-bracket marginal tax rates to what they were under Reagan.
    4) Charge closer to “market rates” for extraction rights on public lands.

    I am sure that your concern for those yet born will lead you to embrace all of these suggestions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  28. Stan Williams III says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: with someone who won’t even acknowledge that 80% of our deficit is directly attributable to GOP policies, enacted by GOP Congresses, and signed into law by a GOP president!.

    Please, enlighten me. 80% of the deficit directly attributable to GOP policies? How?

    And don’t forget to include 80 years of progressive politics and roughly $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities including: Social Security, FHA/Fannie/Freddie, Medicare, Medicaid, etc.

    Why is it that every time a Republican dares to talk about something that common sense tells us we must do (e.g., raise the eligibility age of SS or Medicare), the Democrats shout him down and portray him as rolling grandma off a cliff?

    Suffice it to say that the blame lies with both parties.

    It is high time both parties take serious steps to address these issues.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  29. stonetools says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    Why don’t we try to figure out how to address the CATASTROPHIC deficits of $1.2 trillion a year, every year from now until the Weimar Republic?

    Do you understand that in its later years, the Weimar Republic, advised by such as Von Mises and Hayek, practiced very conservative economic policies that worsened the Great Depression, led to political and economic collapse, and paved the way for the rise of you know who?

    From 1930–1932, Brüning tried to reform the devastated state without a majority in Parliament, governing with the help of the President’s emergency decrees. During that time, the Great Depression reached its low point. In line with conservative economic theory that less government spending would spur economic growth, Brüning drastically cut state expenditures, including in the social sector. He expected and accepted that the economic crisis would, for a while, deteriorate before things would improve. Among others, the Reich completely halted all public grants to the obligatory unemployment insurance (which had been introduced only in 1927), which resulted in higher contributions by the workers and fewer benefits for the unemployed.

    .

    Why don’t you read some history, sonny boy, then come back here and discuss things from an informed point of view. This ain’t Hot Air or Free Republic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  30. gVOR08 says:

    @Stan Williams III: Because:
    a) The issue w/ SS isn’t sustainability, it’s whether the Republicans will honor the bonds and pay back the money they borrowed from SS for wars and tax cuts.
    b) We have an aging population and health care costs are escalating. Those problems don’t go away just because we take them off the Medicare books. So let’s deal with them , not sweep them under the rug.
    c) If you think things through, you’ll generally find that conservative common sense is a poor substitute for actual knowledge and reason.

    (Tough crowd over here, ain’t it?)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  31. stonetools says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    A few quick questions. When the federal budget was balanced last, who was President and what political party did he belong to?

    What was the name of the President who squandered the surplus, passed two deficit busting tax cuts, presided over two unfunded wars , and was asleep at the switch when the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression began ? Which party did he belong to?

    That may clue you in as to why we think the Republicans are mostly to blame for the deficit.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  32. mantis says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    Why is it that every time a Republican dares to talk about something that common sense tells us we must do

    When was the last time any Republican uttered anything remotely resembling common sense?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  33. stonetools says:

    @mantis:

    ” Republican common sense” ?

    That rare species has been observed fewer and fewer times in the wild over the past thirty years. Most scientists believe it is on the brink of extinction, although a few believers hold out hope for its survival and eventual revival.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  34. Davebo says:

    Wow.

    No Social Security is an unfunded mandate!

    You keep on using that phrase. I do not think it means what you think it means…

    I’d blame Palin but I couldn’t hoist that level of ignorance on even Caribou Barbie.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  35. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    This should be said to Harry Reid loudly and often.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  36. An Interested Party says:

    Yes, the Reagan era touched off an immense spending binge. But, remember: he was dealing with a Democrat Congress that refused his efforts at sane fiscal policy. Recall, for instance, that he tried to eliminate entire Departments (e.g., Dept. of Education) and was pilloried by the Democrats and media for doing so.

    Ahhh, so the simple explanation is that poor Reagan was swindled by those evil Democrats and their vile media enablers…considering how conservatives have deified Reagan, what explains how he was rolled over and over and over again? Perhaps the Alzheimer’s set in earlier than reported…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  37. al-Ameda says:

    Keep it classy John. Just like that spray tan.

    Coming from a guy who f***ked up the first round by trying to do an end run on Obama with the so-called “Plan B,” this comes as no surprise whatsoever.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  38. al-Ameda says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    This should be said to Harry Reid loudly and often.

    Minor correction: This should be said to Harry Reid Donald trump loudly and often

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  39. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @al-Ameda: I’m confused. Is there a critical shortage in the nation’s strategic “F***-you” reserves? Is there some reason it can’t be said to both, loudly and often?

    At least Trump’s a private citizen, holding no public office of power and influence. The Democrats keep giving Reid his office. Thanks, Democrats.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  40. Stan Williams III says:

    @gVOR08: “back the money they borrowed from SS for wars and tax cuts”

    Let’s ignore the fact that the primary Constitutional duty of the federal government is to protect the U.S.; and let’s ignore the fact that 3,000 citizens perished on 9/11 in the worst attack on our homeland in history; and let’s ignore the fact that tax cuts don’t “cost” the government anything — it’s our money, after all –, but for the sake of argument let’s ignore all of that.

    Take the trillion dollars or so that the Al Qaeda/Afghanistan Wars cost… add to it the two trillion or so dollars that the Bush Tax Cuts (suddenly popular, eh?) “cost” … and Social Security is still $25 – $40 trillion in the red (depending upon which actuaries you believe), because the program isn’t sustainable in its current form. Period.

    Instead of trying to pin blame on one party or the other, I pin blame on both parties repeatedly violating the Constitutional limits on the federal government that would have prevented all of this madness.

    The system is going to collapse. Period. So the question remains: what policies would help minimize the effects of this collapse on the most vulnerable in our society?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  41. Stan Williams III says:

    @An Interested Party: Actually, unlike Obama, Reagan and Clinton both negotiated (remember “triangulation” in Clinton’s case?) with the other side.

    Obama is a true believer and the Cloward-Piven Strategy he learned at Columbia is my best assessment regarding where he’s leading the U.S.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  42. george says:

    @Stan Williams III:

    Let’s ignore the fact that the primary Constitutional duty of the federal government is to protect the U.S.; and let’s ignore the fact that 3,000 citizens perished on 9/11 in the worst attack on our homeland in history; and let’s ignore the fact that tax cuts don’t “cost” the government anything — it’s our money, after all –, but for the sake of argument let’s ignore all of that.

    How does spending trillions of dollars overseas (including bases in places outside of our territory) protect us? Or do do you mean protect the interests of corporations? No one is against spending money to protect our homeland. The issue is spending money on overseas adventures.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  43. Stan Williams III says:

    @stonetools: “…What was the name of the President who squandered the surplus, passed two deficit busting tax cuts, presided over two unfunded wars , and was asleep at the switch when the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression began ? Which party did he belong to?”

    First of all, intellectual honesty dictates that the “Clinton Surplus” (there was no surplus, of course, if you include everything “off the books”) was the product of many things, including:

    (a) The invention of the world-wide web, which touched off the tech boom-and-bust;
    (b) The Y2K remediation frenzy, which resulted in $600B – $1.2T of additional technology spending in the 1996-2000 timeframe
    (c) John Kasich in the House, who constructed the budget along with Newt Gingrich

    Now, W was a profligate spender and horrible on many domestic fronts. Let’s say he started the fire.

    Obama has now doused the fire with gasoline and the entire house is burning.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  44. Stan Williams III says:

    @stonetools: “…Do you understand that in its later years, the Weimar Republic, advised by such as Von Mises and Hayek, practiced very conservative economic policies that worsened the Great Depression, led to political and economic collapse, and paved the way for the rise of you know who?…”

    Don’t let the word “conservative” describe the policies of the Weimar Republic – as you well know, the Reparations Commission dictated much of what occurred leading up to hyperinflation.

    When I say conservative, I mean “constitutional conservative” — or operating within the bounds of the original intent of the Conservatives and its lawfully passed amendments.

    How much better off financially would this country be had Wilson, FDR, and LBJ operating _within_ the Constitution?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  45. JohnMcC says:

    @stonetools: The sadly ignorant-of-history Mr Williams could easily have discovered that the period of hyperinflation in Weimar Germany lasted from ’21 to ’24. After that was a considerable period of relative austerity which accompanied the unemployment that made the Nazi revolution possible.

    That would however require curiosity and some regard for facts. Of which he has a stunning deficit.

    Not short of certainty in his opinions however.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  46. NickTamere says:

    @Stan Williams III: I’d like to point out that for someone referencing “fires” and the Weimar Republic that the Reichstag fire was essentially a manufactured crisis used to seize power and have the Nazi party assume control of the government. But I’m sure that the “debt ceiling crisis” is completely different. “Deficits didn’t matter” up until January 2009; let me know if you can find a republican not named “Ron Paul” who voted against raising the debt ceiling before that time.

    Incidentally, you didn’t touch any of my very reasonable proposals for tackling the deficit.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  47. An Interested Party says:

    Let’s ignore the fact that the primary Constitutional duty of the federal government is to protect the U.S.; and let’s ignore the fact that 3,000 citizens perished on 9/11 in the worst attack on our homeland in history; and let’s ignore the fact that tax cuts don’t “cost” the government anything — it’s our money, after all –, but for the sake of argument let’s ignore all of that.

    While we are ignoring those things, let us not ignore the fact that Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11, so the waste of blood and treasure in Iraq had little to nothing to do with the Constitutional duty of the federal government protecting our country…let us also not ignore the fact that if the federal government is going to wage wars, it isn’t a very sensible idea to have tax cuts while waging those wars, unless of course you’re happy with Chinese money paying for those wars rather than your tax dollars…

    Obama is a true believer and the Cloward-Piven Strategy he learned at Columbia is my best assessment regarding where he’s leading the U.S.

    Oh please, spare us all that horse$hit…you should just come right out and call him a socialist or mention Saul Alinsky or some other such stupid nonsense…

    Obama has now doused the fire with gasoline and the entire house is burning.

    Oh absolutely! It would have been much better if he had put in place austerity measures instead…that would have gotten us out of the recession real quick…why, we’d be in the land of milk and honey right now…

    How much better off financially would this country be had Wilson, FDR, and LBJ operating _within_ the Constitution?

    Let me guess, the income tax, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid all really, really, really piss you off? Sorry sweetie, but none of those are going anywhere anytime soon…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0