Open thread - Republicans really aren't good at this

Today the GOP farm bill went down in flames as 62 of the GOP Teabag faction voted against the leadership, joining nearly all Democrats to deal Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor yet another defeat from within. Of course, the Teabaggers didn't vote against the bill because they were aghast at the steep cuts to vital food stamp funding. No, they wanted to just do away with food stamps all together, and much like the purity left threw a fit that the bill wasn't "good" enough.

A few quotes from around the Intertubes.

From Steve Benen:
To be sure, even if the House had passed its bill, it wasn’t going far given the scope of the opposition from Senate Democrats and an unambiguous veto threat from the Obama White House.

But the real takeaway here is that the House Republican leadership, once again, failed miserably: “The House defeated the farm bill resoundingly … dealing another blow to Speaker John A. Boehner as he continues to struggle to move legislation opposed by conservative interest groups.”...

As for what happens now, it’s not entirely clear, but the next move will probably be a temporary extension of the status quo, while GOP leaders redouble their efforts to learn how to count to 218.
More Steve Benen:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was amazed by the Republicans’ disarray this afternoon, telling reporter s, “It’s silly. It’s sad. It’s juvenile. It’s unprofessional. It’s amateur hour.”

One thing is for sure: we didn’t see embarrassments like today’s when Pelosi was carrying the gavel. Cantor should probably stop blaming her and start taking notes on how she ran the chamber so effectively.
From Greg Sargent:
I’d add, however, that this is useful in a perverse way, as a reminder of the degree to which the House GOP leadership needs Democrats to get things done, given its inability to count on the support of House conservatives. And this has implications for the immigration debate, too. “This underscores that Boehner cannot pass bills on his own,” Congressional scholar Norman Ornstein told me in a quick interview today. “He can’t do anything with only Republicans. The real power center in the House is not Boehner.
 From The Hill, Cantor tries to throw blame Dems' way. Steny Hoyer is having none of it.
Hoyer started by accusing House Republicans of taking a bipartisan bill that was reported by the Agriculture Committee, and turning it into a partisan bill by adding a controversial provision that would have given states the option of limiting food stamps.

"So I tell you with all due respect Mr. Majority Leader … I wasn't going to bring up what happened today," Hoyer said. "But what happened today is you turned a bipartisan bill, necessary for our farmers, necessary for our consumers, necessary for the people of America, that many of us would have supported, and you turned it into a partisan bill."
From The Washington Post, via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
If you think that anyone — and that includes much-discussed Speaker-in-waiting Paul Ryan, Wisc., — can tell that group of legislators what to do, you don't understand the political calculus they use to make decisions. They are far more loyal to the tea party movement than to the House Republican establishment. Jim DeMint or Ted Cruz would have a far better chance of convincing them how to vote than Boehner, Cantor or McCarthy do.
Currently, we have only one working branch of government, and that's the Executive. Congress is mired in dysfunction on both sides of Capitol Hill, and unless 2014 produces a Democratic tidal wave (which I'm hoping it will), the country will limp  into 2016 for a final showdown. The Supreme Court will have its defining moment next week when its term ends and it releases the most contentious decisions of the session.

The GOP has shown itself completely unable to perform the most minor tasks of government; major initiatives are way beyond its abilities. Those of us in the non-mainstream media have to sound this incompetence like a war-drum, keeping the insistent beat that the GOP isn't interested in governing; it's interested in just blowing up crap.

Strap in, boys and girls. It's going to get bumpier, and we have work to do.

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