John Boehner is the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. He was elected for a twelfth term in November of 2012 as the representative for the Eighth Congressional District of Ohio. On January 5, 2011 he was sworn into the 112th Congress as the 53rd Speaker of the House. January 3, 2013 he was re-elected for a second term. Boehner’s focus in office has been working for a more accountable, smaller, and less costly federal government (Biography). His work to reform the government began long before he was elected as Speaker of the House. He is recognized as part of the 1990’s “Gang of Seven,” This term was used to describe Republicans who worked to rid Congress of corruption (Roff, Peter). He has both been commended and criticized for his work with the Tea Party.
The Tea Party describes a group of ultra-conservative Republicans. Their ultimate message is one of outrage towards big government, big business, big national debt, and big taxes (Rowen, Beth). The Tea Party took root in 2009, shortly after President Obama was elected into office. They believe that they are working for, and representing, the true owners of the US, “We the people,” (teaparty.org). The Tea Party began gaining strength at a nationwide series of rallies on April 15, 2009, fed up with the government. The protesters used the term tea as an acronym for “Taxed enough already,” (Britannica).
Boehner’s allegiance with the Tea Party has often made him look weak to the public. The government shutdown was an ultimate low point in terms of the Tea Party and Boehner’s image. The Tea Party, or more specifically, as FreedomWorks and Heritage Action, two prominent Tea Party lobbying organizations, worked to squash the Affordable Care Act, the bill that would ultimately push Boehner over the edge. The only thing they successfully did, however, was alienate the public. The Republican party lost twenty-eight percent from their approval rating. “For Americans, the party became a symbol of all that is wrong with Washington,” (Marsden). This ultimately fell on Boehner’s shoulders as he was blamed for the shutdown, and additionally, the delayed reopening of the government. “The only thing that is keeping the government shut down is that Speaker John Boehner won’t even let the bill get a yes or no vote because he doesn’t want to anger the extremists in his party,” Obama said at a Maryland construction company Thursday (Dovere).
On December eleventh, Boehner had finally had enough. He decided that passing the Affordable Care Act was absolutely necessary and he was tired of the Tea Party trying to squander it, so, he put his foot down and drew a line in the sand with his own party. His outrage was apparent as he accused Heritage Action and Club for Growth of using the members of his party (Siddiqui). "Yesterday when the criticism was coming, frankly I thought it was my job and my obligation to stand up for conservatives here in the Congress who want more deficit reduction, stand up...