The John Boehner era is drawing to a close, though the man will be long remembered for battling earmarks, punching himself in fights with the Obama administration, and for giving cow flatulence its rightful place in the American political discourse. Boehner's resignation makes a government shutdown less likely, hopefully sparing us from having to look at too many pictures of the Capitol dome with all that nasty scaffolding. And Donald Trump got booed at the Values Voters Summit, possibly because attendees realized Trump has no values. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, September 25th, 2015:
HELL NO YOU CAN'T KEEP BLAMING ME FOR EVERYTHING - When House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced Friday that he would resign his speakership, he did so at a bittersweet moment. The sweet part is that after 20 years of trying, the former altar boy finally got a pope to address Congress, an achievement that so moved him he practically wept through the entire event. The bitter part was that Boehner was once again caught in yet another government shutdown drama, with a recalcitrant supporting cast happy for Boehner to be the star of a show that flops every time. Now, with a faction of conservative House Republicans again threatening to oust Boehner from leadership, he's resigning in an effort to spare the institution leadership turmoil in addition to its usual dysfunction. Boehner's announcement makes a shutdown less likely. "He is the tree character in Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree. He did this for his friends who he didn't want to have to take a tough vote," said Sam Geduldig, a GOP operative close to Boehner. "Now all that's left is his stump for them to sit on. We're so proud of him." [w/ HuffPost's Sam Stein]
Remember when Boehner said climate change wasn't a serious issue because cows fart?
PRESIDENT OBAMA SAYS BYE - He said he called Boehner, then offered praise: "John Boehner is a good man. He is a patriot. He cares deeply about the House, an institution in which he served for a long time. He cares about his constituents, and he cares about America. We have obviously had a lot of disagreements, and politically we’re at different ends of the spectrum. But I will tell you, he has always conducted himself with courtesy and civility with me. He has kept his word when he made a commitment. He is somebody who has been gracious. And I think maybe most importantly, he’s somebody who understands that in government, in governance, you don't get 100 percent of what you want, but you have to work with people who you disagree with -- sometimes strongly -- in order to do the people’s business."
PELOSI FUNDRAISING EMAIL: Speaker John Boehner is resigning. And now we’re headed toward another needless and self-destructive government shutdown.
BOEHNER FAN FICTION: The speaker surveyed the front nine stretching endlessly in front of him, its green grass freshly manicured. The color of hope, he thought to himself, smiling a little. He looked forward to the glass of merlot he'd savor back at the club, his favorite shitheads gathered 'round. Here's to you, John.
SPEAKER KEVIN MCCARTHY? Ashley Alman and Ryan Grim with some Things You Need To Know about the California Republican: "McCarthy is a likeable guy. But nobody really likes him. What's striking about talking to Republicans about McCarthy is how few are actual supporters, rather than people who would rather he have a job than somebody they like less. It's been working for him his entire political career, though, and politicians have been known to back all the way into the Oval Office. Find us a rabid supporter of George H.W. Bush if you think we're wrong. Being liked is overrated." [HuffPost]
Jonathan Allen looks at the race for majority leader.
ERIC CANTOR CAME REAL CLOSE TO BEING FIRST JEWISH SPEAKER - Sam Stein and Ryan Grim: "Former Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) learned on Friday that at one point, while serving as House majority leader, he'd been on the cusp of achieving his life goal to become the first Jewish speaker of the House in U.S. history. Two years ago, HuffPost reported, citing sources close to Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), that the speaker planned to step down after the 2014 elections. Boehner's office denied the report. And sure enough, he went on to serve in the speaker's post well into 2015. On Friday morning, however, Boehner abruptly announced that he would be resigning from Congress by the end of October. And in a statement, a Boehner aide confirmed that he had already stayed on nine months longer than he'd originally planned. 'The Speaker’s plan was to serve only through the end of last year. Leader Cantor’s loss in his primary changed that calculation,' said the Boehner aide." Told y'all. [HuffPost]
GOVERNMENT LOOKING LESS SHUTDOWNY - Seung Min Kim: "The odds of a government shutdown just got very low. Speaker John Boehner’s stunning announcement Friday that he would resign from Congress quiets concerns that federal agencies will shut their doors after Sept. 30, freeing the speaker from any political backlash he would face by shepherding a so-called 'clean' funding bill to President Barack Obama…. 'I think we’re gonna not shut down the government,' House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) predicted confidently on Friday." [Politico]
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MAILER DAEMON BITES CLINTON ONCE MORE - Guess whose Benghazi committee first turned up this whole email thing. Bradley Klapper: "The Obama administration has discovered a chain of emails that Hillary Rodham Clinton failed to turn over when she provided what she said was the full record of work-related correspondence as secretary of state, officials said Friday, adding to the growing questions related to the Democratic presidential front-runner's unusual usage of a private email account and server while in government. The messages were exchanged with retired Gen. David Petraeus when he headed the military's U.S. Central Command, responsible for running the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They began before Clinton entered office and continued into her first days at the State Department. They largely pertained to personnel matters and don't appear to deal with highly classified material, officials said, but their existence challenges Clinton's claim that she has handed over the entirety of her work emails from the account." [AP]
Ted Leo joined So That Happened, the HuffPost Politics podcast, and talked about his efforts to help Lincoln Chafee with Aimee Mann and Conan O'Brien.
US AND CHINA HUG IT OUT ON CLIMATE - Kate Sheppard: "U.S. President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced additional commitments on climate change Friday, along with a 'common vision for an ambitious global climate agreement.' The presidents of the world's two biggest emitters are meeting in Washington. In the announcement, China committed to instate a cap-and-trade program for lowering emissions in 2017, and the U.S. reaffirmed its plans to cut emissions from power plants 32 percent by 2030. .. In a joint press conference with Xi on Friday, Obama said their work on climate shows 'there's no reason for other countries, developed and developing, to not do so as well.'" [HuffPost]
CYBER SECURITY, TOO, SORT OF - "U.S. President Barack Obama announced on Friday that he and Chinese President Xi Jinping had reached a 'common understanding' on steps to curb cyber spying and agreed that neither government would conduct economic espionage in cyberspace. The two leaders also unveiled a deal to build on a landmark emissions agreement struck last year, outlining new steps they will take to deliver on pledges they made then to slash their greenhouse gas emissions. Speaking after White House talks during Xi's first U.S. state visit, Obama quickly homed in on the thorniest dispute between the world's two biggest economies - growing U.S. complaints about Chinese hacking of government and corporate databases." [Reuters]
CONTRARY TO THE POPE, LOUIE GOHMERT THINKS WE SHOULD KILL SOME PEOPLE - Niels Lesniewski: "When Pope Francis called for the death penalty to be abolished Thursday, there was at least one person in the audience who had condemned convicted criminals to death. 'Having been a judge in Texas who handled capital murder cases, I had come to a conclusion that there were some cases … where that was appropriate, and I still think that way,' Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert said in an interview while passing through the Capitol basement after the historic address to Congress. 'I appreciate, you know, the pope’s comments but there are some places, there are some cases where it’s appropriate. In Texas, if you commit a felony and a murder or multiple murders or a murder on a first responder, then that gets you there. I had three capital murder cases I tried,' Gohmert told CQ Roll Call. 'Two got the death penalty, and it is quite sobering to look somebody in the eye and tell them they’re going to be taken and put to death.'" [CQ Roll Call]
SPOILER ALERT: ACTUALLY, HE IS! - Marina Fang: "Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) said he disagrees with Pope Francis' call to fight climate change and thinks the pope should not delve into the issue because he 'is not a scientist.' 'He's not a scientist, he's a religious leader,' Bush said, according to a video posted by the Democratic opposition research group American Bridge. ... However, Francis holds a degree as a chemical technician and worked as a chemist before becoming a priest." [
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - This clip of Boehner struggling not to cry is incredible.
TRUMP BOOED - Elise Foley: "GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump drew boos from a heavily supportive conservative crowd on Friday after going after opponent and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). 'You have this clown Marco Rubio,' he said at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C., before being interrupted by the crowd. Trump pushed forward, adding a backhanded compliment to Rubio for being true to himself on immigration -- an issue in which there is 'nobody weaker,' according to the business mogul. 'He's in favor of immigration and he has been -- he has been with the gang of eight and you remember the gang of eight. It was terrible,' Trump said, referring to the comprehensive immigration reform bill Rubio helped draft but has since backed away from." [HuffPost]
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@elisefoley: It hurts my feelings when politicians talk about the media as if we're not here :-/
@JesseDavidFox: Before podcasts, could you ever have imagined we'd hear so many famous people say, "Oh, have we started?"
@alexburnsNYT: People should just ask a series of escalating tearjerker Qs
"Mr. Speaker, could you summarize the plot of 'Field of Dreams'?"
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