Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt called on Republicans to engage in “masterly inactivity” until the 2014 elections, urging lawmakers to avoid dealing with an untrustworthy White House and “focus all of their activity on Obamacare’s rollout.”
Hewitt appeared on CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper” to discuss the State of the Union, Republican strategies and his new book. Tapper began by asking the radio host what he thought of the president’s speech last night. Although Hewitt largely panned the address, he gave President Barack Obama credit for highlighting the tremendous sacrifice of Sgt. First Class Cory Remsburg, who was grievously wounded fighting in Afghanistan.
But even here he added a caveat, telling Tapper that while “it was wonderful they applauded [Remsburg], where was the president on the rest of the troops [of] whom he is the Commander-in-Chief, defending these men and women who served 20 years against a Congress looking to spend $6 billion on pork?”
The radio host also claimed that Republicans in Congress should fight Obama’s call for a “year of action” with their own year of inaction. “‘Masterly inactivity’ comes from a great prime minister of the 19th century, Lord Salisbury, who believed in doing ‘nothing’ well,” Hewitt explained. “And the Republicans need to do nothing well right now on immigration, right now on spending. They need to focus all of their activity on Obamacare’s rollout and the actual facts about it, and on the aftermath of Benghazi, which you and I have talked about many times on the air,” he continued. “They don’t need to advance an immigration bill. They don’t need to walk into the president’s Roosevelt Room and get hammered again, as happened last year during the shutdown when they thought they made progress and the president emerged and basically clipped ‘em, hit from the blindside.
“Speaker Boehner’s been hit by the blindside so many times by the president, he probably won’t ever engage in a serious conversation with him again,” the radio host declared. “So I think now is the time wait for November 2014 and see what the country thinks about Obamacare.”
Many commentators speculate that Republican leadership intend to meet Obama at least halfway on immigration reform this year, perhaps providing a pathway to legal status — if not outright citizenship — to the millions of illegal immigrants residing unlawfully in the U.S. To hear Hewitt tell it, such cooperation would a severe miscalculation on the part of Republican lawmakers, with Obama using any deal to score political points at their expense.
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