Back when [crscore]John Boehner[/crscore] was Speaker, he was the unpopular establishment figure fighting against a passionate Republican base that adhered strictly to conservative orthodoxy. Today, in a surprising turn of events, Boehner—who supports Donald Trump—finds himself in a more enviable position.
Boehner has nothing to lose. He has no Speakership from which to be ousted. Meanwhile, many of his old adversaries—you know, the [crscore]Ted Cruz[/crscore] wing of the House GOP—suddenly find themselves on the wrong side of a passionate base that prizes Trumpian strength over ideological purity.
The tables, it seems, have turned.
Which brings us to this news in Politico the other day, and a crazy theory I have about what it means: “The former House speaker will spend late July and all of August on a cross-country bus trip raising money and campaigning for House Republicans, according to multiple sources familiar with his plans.”
Normally, this news would be a complete snoozer. I mean, who cares if John Boehner goes on a bus tour? And maybe that’s just what this is, just John Boehner getting back in the game, helping to raise money for some of his old buddies in tough races…
But I also think it’s at least possible Boehner is positioning himself for a couple of paybacks.
Think of it this way: Boehner now finds himself in the pro-Trump camp, which ironically puts him in a perfect position to exact revenge against the Freedom Caucus crew, setting up a scenario where those guys lose support in their home districts based on what Boehner says—because he’s suddenly a Trump guy.
This may sounds too devious and paranoid. And maybe it is. Maybe I’ve seen too many episodes of House of Cards? Still, I think it’s remotely possible Boehner may use his newfound leverage to reward his friends and punish his old enemies.
Will Boehner’s summer road trip entail sipping wine, doing some fishing, and helping some old buddies on the campaign trail—or will it end up looking more like the Godfather’s Baptism scene?
As the son of a bartender might say, revenge is a dish best served cold.