House Speaker John Boehner had a chance to become Speaker of the entire House of Representatives instead of just trying to hold together his fractured caucus of Republicans.
Instead of trying to find 217 votes within the Republicans in the House…which meant passing a bill no Democrat could ever support….Boehner could have taken another path.
Here is that path…there appears to be a majority in both houses of Congress for a package of spending custs and debt reduction which include closing some tax loopholes.
Instead of sticking a Constitutional amendment on the House bill, Boehner could have reached out to Democrats, dropped the Constitutional amendment, added more budget cuts and put in a tax loophole elimination provision.
Yes Boehner would have lost maybe 80 of his Tea Party hobbits.
But he could have gained 90 Democrats in return and passed a bill that would have been impossible for the Senate to reject.
Boehner would have been Speaker and leader of the entire House of Representatives.
Sure he would have been viciously attacked by the hobbits in his own party, and maybe even lose the Speaker’s chair as a result.
But he would have saved America and gone down in history as a real leader for the entire country instead of a partisan hack. He would have become the poster child for courage instead of a desparate politician trying to find 217 votes in his own party.
Our neighbors the Tohono O’odham have a story about Baboquivari…the sacred mountain on the eastern edge of their lands.
Baboquivari is not only a mountain, it is a symbloic place where the tides of history can be changed by those who stand at the boundary between the past and the future…and act for the benefit of all the people. You don’t have to stand on the mountain itself to encounter a “Baboquivari moment”.
Most folks never want to stand at the point of Baboquivari where they can change the direction of history because there are awesome energies loose….not a few people have been driven off Baboquivari mountain by lightning on clear sky days.
But fate sometimes propels people to a Baboquivari moment where what they do at that moment can have profound positive or negative impacts of the whole world.
They can put their self interest ahead of doing the right thing for everyone.
Or they can see the higher purpose and need and act, even though that act may not be in their immediate self-interest.
Boehner had his Baboquivari moment the other day…and he might have saved his power inside the House Republican caucus, but he did nothing to help America transcend the debt limit fight and move forward.
Harry Reid over at the Senate will also stand at Baboquivari, as will Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Obama in the next few days.
Someone needs to put their partisan pandering aside and do the right thing for America.