The Republican Share of the Blame

The Republicans, especially an aggressive, conservative libertarian group within the party, carry the blame for the fact that the American political system doesn’t work anymore.

According to the U.S. Constitution, the constitutional significance of the speaker of the House is telling. The office holder is second in the nation’s presidential line of succession, after the vice president. There have been speakers who could exact political leverage equal to that of the president.

Republicans, and more specifically an aggressive, conservative libertarian group within the party, are now using the position of speaker to ride roughshod over the greater majority, much like in the Senate. Their arrogant, ideological stubbornness just brought the former speaker to his knees, and following his resignation, has scared off the presumed replacement as well.

Now, the chairman of the Republican Study Committee wants a momentous reject to be put up for election to the position — former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan — but only if the party truly stands behind him. That could be good were it to fly in the face of the disastrous “culture of compromise,” but that seems near impossible to imagine. Republicans are an accessory to the structural failure of American politics.

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