Here is what really happened. The House passed a Farm Bill out of committee. It was too Draconian, but it would have has enough support from Democrats that it would have passed. However, 62 Republicans proposed an amendment to cut SNAP (food stamps) by even more, $20 billion. Afraid of opposing InsaniTEA, the rest of the Republicans goose-stepped, and the amendment became part of the bill. That was a poison pill for Democrats, and most of those who had supported it withdrew their support. However, Boehner brought the bill to the floor, because with enough Republicans he needs no support from Democrats. The reason that the bill did not pass is that same Republicans, who proposed the amendment slashing food stamps, stabbed Boehner in the back, by voting against the bill anyway, because they want to steal even more food from the mouths of hungry children. Now Republican leaders claim it was Democrats, who betrayed Boehner, and that is a lie. Boehner is a victim of TEAbuggery! Even the NY Times got this all wrong.
The surprise defeat of the farm bill in the House on Thursday underscored the ideological divide between the more conservative, antispending Republican lawmakers and their leadership, who failed to garner sufficient votes from their caucus as well as from Democrats.
The vote against the bill, 234 to 195, comes a year after House leaders pulled the measure off the calendar because conservative lawmakers demanded deeper cuts in the food stamp program and Democrats objected. This year’s measure called for more significant cuts than the Senate bill, but it still did not go far enough to get a majority in the House to support an overhaul of the nation’s food and farm programs. Sixty-two Republicans, or more than a quarter of the caucus, voted with Democrats to defeat the bill.
The failure was a stinging defeat for Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio, who continues to have trouble marshaling the Republican support he needs to pass major legislation. Without the solid backing of his party, Mr. Boehner has to rely on some Democratic support, which deserted him Thursday…
Inserted from <NY Times>
Chris Hayes covered this during All In and later joined Alex Witt on The Last Word.
Note that Republicans did not join Democrats to help defeat the bill. They wanted to take even more food from the mouths of hungry children. The Democrats voted NO because they don't want to take food from children to provide welfare for pseudo-Christian millionaires like Steve Fincher (R-TN). Chris is right. Good riddance to bad rubbish!
I am not a big Steny Hoyer fan, but I loved the way he chopped Steve Cantor down to size, explaining how Republicans sabotaged their own bill. The Republican Party could not survive with a base of billionaires, so they sowed the wind and courted Birchers, the Klan, The extremist-militias, religious extremists, and hatemongers of every kind to swell their base. Now they are inheriting the whirlwind. But the extremists should beware, as should we all, because this has happened before. Consider the Night of the Long Knives.