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Sarah Palin Just Put John Boehner In a Corner Over Immigration Reform

T.J. Kirkpatrick / Getty Images

Sarah Palin's impeachment cri de coeur is as convoluted as your typical Sarah Palin article. (Characteristic sentence: "Discrediting the price paid for America’s exceptionalism over our history, he’s given false hope and taxpayer’s change to millions of foreign nationals who want to sneak into our country illegally.)

But it's clear enough to serve as a marker: Palin wants Congress to impeach President Obama, and specifically she wants Congress to impeach him over his immigration policies. And if you can ignore her outlandishness for a moment, she can actually help you understand the bind John Boehner faces as he prepares to sue, rather than impeach, Obama.

Palin's a self-caricature, but she speaks for a lot of people. They want impeachment, and they want the articles of impeachment to include a big section on Obama's immigration policies.

Boehner's counteroffer—a lawsuit—won't sell easily. But it'll be even harder to sell if he omits immigration from the bill of particulars. Remember, the purpose of the lawsuit is to simultaneously mollify the impeachment-happy right, and then channel its enthusiasm into voting Republican this November. For that reason, Boehner has dressed it up as a comprehensive response to Obama's equally comprehensive lawlessness. If at the end of the day, Boehner limits his challenges to a handful of trivial actions—the employer mandate delay and No Child Left Behind waivers, say—everyone will notice the incongruity. Including the people he's trying to meet half way.