Conservatives are not happy with Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH.) What appears to be a complete surrender on the issue of tax rate increases has lit a fire under numerous conservative groups and won’t help Mr. Boehner in securing his position as Speaker in the upcoming Congress.

If the reporting out of DC is accurate, Boehner is offering tax increases for all couples or individuals with more than $1 million in annual income. Reportedly Boehner is also offering a one-year debt ceiling increase.

Conservative action group, Club For Growth, voiced their disdain for Speaker Boehner’s latest fiscal cliff offer in no uncertain words.

“First Speaker Boehner offered to raise tax rates after promising not to, and now he’s offering to raise the debt ceiling. Raising tax rates is anti-growth and raising the debt ceiling is pro-government growth – and this is the Republican position?” Club for Growth President Chris Chocola said in a statement.

Chocola’s response signals mounting disapproval of Boehner among the Republican base that has long been suspicious of Boehner’s willingness to stand up to President Obama on matters of concern to Conservatives.

Boehner’s intentions may have been telegraphed by his move to “purge” four conservative members of the house from prime committee positions for not “towing the line.”

Many Conservatives are scratching their heads. Boehner is facing an election for Speaker next month and pressure will likely boil-over after the New Year if Boehner orchestrates a collapse of the Tea Party caucus in the House.

At some point Conservatives will begin to look for standard-bearer in the absence of backbone from Boehner; but it won’t happen until someone rises to lead the opposition to Speaker Boehner.

Boehner’s opposition may have reached critical mass after Sunday night when it was widely reported that Boehner was willing to take the debt ceiling off the table.

“Raising the debt ceiling would give away one of the best tools the Republicans have in their arsenal to force real reform,” Chocola said in his statement. “The debt ceiling is the only mechanism in law that can restrain spending and hitting it forces Washington to confront its spending problem. Raising the debt limit again simply kicks the can down the road. Instead of raising the debt ceiling, the Republicans should use it to force President Obama and the Democrats to accept structural reforms to entitlements, which are the drivers of our debt.”
Boehner has allowed the president to control the debate by accepting that Republican members of the House will receive the lion’s share of responsibility if the fiscal cliff is breached; yet recent polling shows that the public will spread the blame nearly equally between both parties.

Perhaps Boehner is trying to be a statesman and the reports aren’t completely accurate; we’ll know sometime in the next two weeks. If Boehner grants the president a one year pass on the debt ceiling while raising taxes it’s hard to imagine he’ll be holding the gavel for long. A one year punt on the debt ceiling will only make things worse for Republicans when the extension expires in the midst of the next congressional election cycle.


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