What Harry Reid has done

This place needs a little action as Congress remains stalled, so I will briefly answer my brother Rick Manning, who asks: What has Harry Reid done? Well, the answer is simple. Harry Reid has done what majority leaders should do, which is bring the Senate into session to solve the problems of the nation. By contrast, John Boehner has not done what Speakers are supposed to do. First, Boehner's idea that he will only bring up legislation that a majority of Republicans favors violates the very job description of the Speaker, which is to be the Speaker of the full House, not just the Speaker of the Republicans. Then Boehner lost control of his House Republicans. Then Boehner offered a ridiculous Plan B that was doomed to fail. Now Boehner has led his House to head for the hills, and says it is up to Harry Reid to legislate.

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Manning says he is "infuriated" by Reid. Why are Republicans always so infuriated these days? Could this have something to do with why they lost three of the last four national elections? Could this have something to do with the fact that voters trust the president far more than House Republicans on this matter, why voters trust Democrats more than Republicans on these matters, why Nancy Pelosi has well surpassed John Boehner in public approval, and why so many voters blame Republicans more than Democrats in the fiscal-cliff fiasco?

Reid served previously in the House, and what he says today is far more in line with traditions of the House than what Speaker Boehner does today.

I worked for the House leadership under three Speakers, and I repeat for emphasis that the Speaker should be the Speaker for all of the members of the House, not just Republican members. More than two hundred years of history and tradition in the House prove Reid right and Boehner wrong on this role of the Speaker.

I like and respect John Boehner. I believe he is a fundamentally good man. But he has completely lost control of his Republicans in the House, and for House Republicans to head for the hills and leave town at this moment is an embarrassment to them.

Republicans should be angry. Not at President Obama. Not at Senate Majority Leader Reid. They should be angry at Republicans in Washington who are so beholden to factions on the far right that they hurt our country and their party.

The president should call the House back to Washington.

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