Inside the Boehner/McConnell Bromance

WASHINGTON - NOVEMBER 03: House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) (R) listens as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (L) answers questions from reporters at the U.S. Capitol with November 3, 2010 in Washington, DC. Following yesterday's midterm election, House Republicans stand ready to take control of the House of Representatives with Boehner likely becoming the next Speaker of the House. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) Photo: Win McNamee/2010 Getty Images

Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have an "unusual bond," the New York Times tells us today, one with some fairly important legislative consequences, given their respective positions of power. It all sounds downright bromantic, full of "regular personal contact and more frequent staff interaction," especially when compared with the internecine squabbles that have plagued past House/Senate leadership pairs.

When Speaker John A. Boehner was pressed on whether he shared Senator Mitch McConnell’s view on wringing savings out of Medicare in the continuing debt limit fight, he hardly waited for the questioner to finish. “I would agree with Senator McConnell,” the speaker said quickly.

No surprise there. [...]

“We work hard at not surprising each other,” Mr. McConnell said in an interview.

Any armchair shrink could tell you the last bit could spell doom for a long-term relationship, and McConnell and Boehner keep things just spicy enough: While they're in agreement on cutting spending and stopping any tax increases, the pair doesn't exactly see eye-to eye on everything. McConnell is okay with a short-term hike in the debt ceiling for instance, and Boehner wants to give tax breaks to oil companies. The forthcoming Judd Apatow script on the debt-ceiling crisis will surely feature a weed-fueled discussion of the relative merits of each.

Two Top Republican Lawmakers Form Unusual Bond [NYT]