Yesterday, House Republican leaders floated a proposal: They would lift the debt ceiling and avoid frightening economic chaos if Obama merely agrees to implement Mitt Romney's entire economic plan, from the environment to taxes, abolishing Obamacare, regulation — you name it. By the end of the day, they were conceding they didn't have enough votes to pass it through the House. Why not? If you guessed, "it's too extreme," you probably aren't familiar with the workings of the House of Representatives these days.
Actual reason: It's not extreme enough. Seriously:
Illustrating the leadership's challenge in winning Republican votes, a member of the GOP's whip team, Rep. Tom Rooney (Fla.), said he was leaning against the debt-ceiling plan because it did not seriously tackle entitlement reform.
“The problem for me is it doesn't address the debt,” Rooney told The Hill.
There is a certain logic here. Why would the most conservative Republicans settle for forcing Obama to implement Mitt Romney's platform? They thought Romney's platform was too timid in the first place! They were willing to vote for figures like Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich, not to mention Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann, as an expression of their dismay with Romney.
Now, it may seem a little silly to insist that Obama accept an agenda that was too extreme to prevail in a Republican primary. But if you're already insisting that Obama accede to an agenda that was too right wing to win a general election last November, at this point, what's the difference?