In the battle over the budget late Friday, GOP Speaker of the House John Boehner scored a decisive victory for fiscal conservatives, changing the tone in Washington from one of capitulation by conservatives, to one of victory. Now, many observers will whine that Boehner didn’t win on quite enough points, that his victory wasn’t complete enough, and some are even suggesting he blinked when it came to entering into a government shut-down.
Don’t be fooled.
President Obama is the one coming out of this looking more like a laminate flooring salesman than a statesman; his threat to veto any seven-day funding extension proved hollow and in the final deal, Boehner won far more than he gave up on in this first round of economic showdowns.
In fact, one can gauge the significance of the largest-ever one-year cuts in Washington spending by one simple fact: President Obama rushed to take credit for it as soon as the cuts were finalized.
Certainly, more battles lay ahead and the cuts need to get deeper to back America out of its current economic crisis. Boehner needs to prove he’s committed long-term to shrinking, in real terms, both the size and the scope of the Federal government. When the figures start reaching into the trillions in cuts, rather than tens of billions, then we can know that real progress is being made to salvage the American economy.
But credit Boehner this much: even as the Democrats and their liberal media allies carted out all the old familiar clichés about who the Republicans wanted to kill by cutting spending, Boehner didn’t shrink from his responsibility, nor did he weep.
He stayed focused on getting the cuts through. Well done.