John Boehner has a message for President Obama and the Democrats: Don't expect the Republicans to play nice if, as expected, they take over the House following next Tuesday's elections.
“This is not a time for compromise, and I can tell you that we will not compromise on our principles,” Boehner said.
The Ohio Republican said the GOP would work with Obama “to the extent the president wants to work with us, in terms of our goals.”
“We’d welcome his involvement,” Boehner said of the president, who has recently made conciliatory moves.
As for Obama's own agenda, Boehner promised, "We're going to do everything -- and I mean everything we can do -- to kill it, stop it, slow it down, whatever we can.”
The pundits' handbook tells me that I should denounce this naked display of partisanship. But I don't really have a problem with the statements per se. Republican leaders have radically different ideas about how to govern the country. Why should they abandon them? I hope President Obama and the Democrats show a similarly stubborn streak, at least when it comes to the GOP's leadership.
But I also hope that the pundits that make such a big deal about bipartisanship, plus the many voters who agree with them, take note. I also hope they observe the contrast with President Obama, who has consistently reached out to Republicans--more frequently, in fact, than I would have liked.