House Minority Leader John Boehner Is An Idiot

That’s the only thing I can conclude from the vote on the transition to Digital TV. Since it seems like there are around 20 million people who haven’t yet made the transition, and the government voucher program is out of money, making the switch as scheduled will cause massive chaos and tons of people losing their TV.  Obama moved to delay it for six months so that analog-to-digital converters can be made available.  Since this was a fast-tracked vote, it required a two-thirds vote.  While it passed unanimously in the Senate, nearly the entire Republican House delegation voted it down.

I’m not saying he’s an idiot because of his position; there are defensible reasons for their stance, though I doubt those are foremost.  Politically, I can’t think of a more boneheaded move.  First of all, the only people who care will be those who lose their TV.  Other than winning some kudos from business lobbies, there’s no political upside and a huge downside.  Secondly, it’s clear and unprincipled obstructionism.  Thirdly, the only plausible reason to do it is to tweak Obama.  There’s a regular version of the bill coming through next week, which will only require simple majority and will probably get passed.  There’s no discernible upside, and there’s a distinct possibility that 20 million people will hate them for taking away their TV.

I’m pretty sure that the Republican Party is the single biggest electoral asset for the Democrats, after George W. Bush.

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