The Jones “moral turpitude” letter
House Republicans will be caucusing today to vote on new leaders, which is the perfect time for a bombshell, courtesy of North Carolina Rep. Walter Jones:
It must be noted that Jones is no fan of would-be Speaker Kevin McCarthy, and is supporting Rep. Dan Webster for the position. And the letter plays off of rumors. Google can help you find out about those…
Politics ain’t beanbag, and the Jones letter — handwritten note and all — is just another reminder of that.
It also gives a slight twist to Kyle Kondik’s point about the Republican House majority heading into the 2016 elections. Is it safe? All signs point to “yes.” But there are other things in the anxiety closet to keep Republican consultants awake at night:
The new speaker, be it House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R, CA-23) or someone else, does an even poorer job of controlling the caucuses’ far-right id than Boehner, and a December shutdown is just a precursor to a year of widely-covered chaos in the House leading into next November. The key term here is “widely-covered” — the House Republican caucus would have to be so dysfunctional that it became a perpetual national story, generating bad headlines for the party and its presidential nominee.
Democrats will do whatever they can to encourage such dysfunction — they would be fools not to.
But Republicans, fractious as they can be, aren’t (yet) bound together in a suicide pact. Their collective desire to maintain a majority in anticipation of a Republican presidential win may convince them no good can come from running the House into a ditch.
Perhaps the Jones letter, then, is and honest, if backhanded, effort to avoid problems. Or it’s just a bomb set to detonate sometime today. Given the content of the tweet Jones sent highlighting his note, I’m leaning toward bomb:
— Rep. Walter Jones (@RepWalterJones) October 7, 2015