As the Shutdown Seems to be Ending, One Thing is Certain – The Republican Party is a Joke

boehner-pelosiWith the the announcement that the Senate has completed a deal that would reopen our government, and avoid a U.S. default by raising our debt ceiling, I can’t help but think to myself — “What an absolute waste of time this has been.”

This whole thing started because tea party Republicans bought into their own delusion that they could defeat “Obamacare.”  Sure, people like Ted Cruz used it as a political launching pad for his 2016 presidential campaign, but many tea party Republicans really bought into this idea that they would somehow emerge from this shutdown victorious.

Anyone with half a brain knew that wasn’t ever going to happen.  There was absolutely no way that “Obamacare” was going to be delayed, defunded or repealed.  Which prompted the question by many, “If Republicans stood no chance at accomplishing their goals against “Obamacare,” what in the hell was this shutdown about?”

Beats the hell out of me.  Outside of batshit crazy tea party Republicans not understanding how government works, Ted Cruz’s presidential aspirations and the GOP’s ego preventing them from admitting they screwed up 2 weeks ago—this whole thing accomplished nothing.

Well, that’s not entirely true.  It did manage to inflict quite a lot of damage nationally to the Republican party.

But as this shutdown’s end seems imminent, what did Republicans really “win?”

The answer: Nothing.

The Affordable Care Act is more or less fully intact, with a small concession coming in the way of more intricate income verification methods (something that actually makes sense).

So, at the end of the day, what did this hardline Republican stance which shut down our government end up doing to “Obamacare?”

Absolutely nothing.

Which begs the question, “Then why the heck couldn’t we have just done this deal from the start, avoiding the shutdown altogether?”

And that answer is simple — because of Republican ego problems.  They went head first into this shutdown, buying into their own flawed rhetoric.  Then once the shutdown began, they didn’t have a clue how to get out of it.

They weren’t going to simply give in and allow the House to vote on the Senate’s original plan which would have kept the government open without any shutdown.  That would have made them look foolish and they had their pride getting in the way.  They couldn’t simply say, “We screwed up, we were wrong, we can’t win—let’s end the shutdown.”

No.  They let their ego drag this out to nearly the last possible minute, harming millions of Americans in the process.

Because at the end of the day this shutdown was a tool used conservatives to try to delay, repeal or defund “Obamacare.” And at the end of the day Republicans accomplished exactly none of those objectives.  Republicans failed themselves and (much more importantly) failed the country by dragging us through this mess for no good reason to start with.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Rayo

    This is not a joke. This was, and is, a serious insurrection, a quasi coup without arms but with public persuasion. I hate the shallow analysis. If you are saying “beats me” as to the cause of it or the gains..you shouldn’t be writing opinion pieces that don’t illuminate. It is a fascist styled idea for a minority to sabotage not an enemy but your own people. It diminished the steady economic good news by this administration.

  • We have to make sure that the public doesn’t forget about this next year when it’s time to vote.

    • Darkthunder

      18 Senators voted against the Senate plan to fund the government and ending the shutdown. Among them; Cruz, Paul and Rubio.

      Let’s hope the voters remembers this next year, and kick these asshats to the curb.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        There are too many stupid people who agree with Cruz, Paul and Rubio.

  • Scaramongus

    Sadly, I do not think many lessons were learned. I fear we will be through this again and again and again. I hope I am wrong.

  • Bobjr

    What happened to the employment problem the Republicans were elected to address? No longer a problem in America?

  • Donna Ramsey

    Why does Cruz have asperations to become president? Does he forget that he was born in CANADA, and legally can’t be president????? If the tea bag scum suckers, say that President Obabama is illegally president because they don’t think he was born here, how do they think Cruz can run? It’s public knowledge, CRUZ WAS BORN IN CANADA!!!!

  • The Green Devilish One

    Bachman was already on Fox on her knees in front of Hannity pledging to keep trying to fight ObamaCare. At least I think that’s what she was saying, since her mouth was full. These clowns don’t understand- they cannot overturn ObamaCare unless they win elections. Their best strategy would be to STFU and hope ObamaCare fails but they’re not smart, which is why they’re called teatards.

  • chris

    give ’em enough rope…my guess is the “normal” republicans let the far-right prove to everyone how crazy they really are and how f-ed up things could get if they actually got their way. or maybe i’m giving them too much credit for long-term thinking.

  • strayaway

    “Which begs the question, “Then why the heck couldn’t we have just done this deal from the start, avoiding the shutdown altogether?”

    Better yet, give president Obama an Enabling Act for the duration of the emergency and let him rule by executive order. We could successfully eliminate all that messy stuff that goes on in Congress that has been impeding the President.

  • Mrs_oatmeal

    Is Michelle Bachman as happy today as the day theRepublican Party was giddy for the government shut down? Did the Koch brothers buy her out so she wouldn’t run again? If Cruz thinks he was victorious, he is very delusional.