A Senate Deal Solves Nothing—It's All About Boehner

A blog about business and economics.
Oct. 14 2013 3:00 PM

A Senate Deal Solves Nothing—It's All About Boehner

184214713
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) leaves after meeting with Republicans on the government shut down on Oct. 12, 2013, in Washington.

Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Reports are floating around today that Sens. Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell have reached a deal that would reopen the government and lift the debt ceiling. It's an interesting development, and I'm sure we'll hear more about it soon, but it can't be emphasized enough that a Senate deal doesn't actually solve anything.

After all, back before the government shut down, the Senate passed a "clean" continuing resolution that funded the government at the GOP's proposed level but didn't repeal the Affordable Care Act. The reason the government shut down is that House Republicans wouldn't allow that clean CR to come to the floor. If they had brought it to the floor, it probably would have passed. But it didn't. And this continues to be the issue with any deal. What McConnell says or does may matter in some psychological or sense in terms of "optics."

Advertisement

But in the real world what matters is what the House GOP leadership wants to do. So far throughout this crisis, Boehner and his team have put caucus unity ahead of the good of the economy. And since Boehner's caucus includes a lot of people who are acting crazy, prioritizing caucus unity keeps leading to crazy outcomes. The only way out of this box is for Boehner to stop doing that.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

Congress’ Public Shaming of the Secret Service Was Political Grandstanding at Its Best

Michigan’s Tradition of Football “Toughness” Needs to Go—Starting With Coach Hoke

A Plentiful, Renewable Resource That America Keeps Overlooking

Animal manure.

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Building a Better Workplace

You Deserve a Pre-cation

The smartest job perk you’ve never heard of.

Hasbro Is Cracking Down on Scrabble Players Who Turn Its Official Word List Into Popular Apps

Florida State’s New President Is Underqualified and Mistrusted. He Just Might Save the University.

  News & Politics
Politics
Sept. 30 2014 9:33 PM Political Theater With a Purpose Darrell Issa’s public shaming of the head of the Secret Service was congressional grandstanding at its best.
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 30 2014 7:02 PM At Long Last, eBay Sets PayPal Free
  Life
Gaming
Sept. 30 2014 7:35 PM Who Owns Scrabble’s Word List? Hasbro says the list of playable words belongs to the company. Players beg to differ.
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 30 2014 12:34 PM Parents, Get Your Teenage Daughters the IUD
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 30 2014 3:21 PM Meet Jordan Weissmann Five questions with Slate’s senior business and economics correspondent.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 30 2014 8:54 PM Bette Davis Talks Gender Roles in a Delightful, Animated Interview From 1963
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 30 2014 7:00 PM There’s Going to Be a Live-Action Tetris Movie for Some Reason
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 30 2014 11:51 PM Should You Freeze Your Eggs? An egg freezing party is not a great place to find answers to this or other questions.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 30 2014 5:54 PM Goodbye, Tough Guy It’s time for Michigan to fire its toughness-obsessed coach, Brady Hoke.