An Open Letter to Speaker Boehner

An open letter to Speaker John Boehner

Speaker Boehner,

Why did you divide the party?

Where would we be right now had you not divided the party with your purge of conservatives from key committee positions in 2012? Your rejection of the fiscal conservatives was particularly obtuse as it was a slap in the face to those who had helped the Republicans win the house in the first place.
When the conservatives pushed to defund the Affordable Care Act why did our party leadership reject them? Obamacare was from the start every bit as much economic policy as it was health care policy. A law that fundamentally transforms 1/6th of the economy is fundamentally an economic policy. Had we framed the debate properly the tactics of Mr. Cruz, Mr. Lee et al would have been properly framed as one of several tactics. You told us for years that the GOP was together on its opposition to this law so the approach to defunding and overturn must have necessarily been vigorous from the start. Alas, it was not.

2. Why didn’t you explain to the American people why the ACA is a train wreck?

You more than any other representative have the forum to articulate the problem. I see you on television more than the president. As the leader of the GOP in the House it is your responsibility not just to oppose but to articulate a concise and logical reason for the opposition. This is shooting fish in a barrel and would have strengthened your position. It appears to the outsider such as me that the omission is intentional. The conservatives in the party were correct and thus the moderate leadership does not wish to acknowledge them.
The ACA was the result of surely the strangest bedfellows Washington has seen in years. Big insurance companies worked with progressive Democrats to craft the law. The big insurance companies needed the mandate to help offset trillions in costs do the aging population. The progressives of course wanted universal control over health care in the nation. The big insurance companies quickly found that the solution would have price-controls and thus negate the free-market competition. The progressives quickly found that the bill would end any chance at a single payer solution. When the legislation was completed and passed into law we ended up with a huge increase in demand and no corresponding increase in the supply. The Affordable Care Act must now raise costs. This is axiomatic and simple for anyone to understand. Yet the leadership never makes the case. Why?

3. Why are we fighting the debt limit as a distinct issue?

The debt ceiling debate has been decried by the left and their media supporters as acrimonious and contentious. Of course it is! That is the proper nature of this debate. Anytime a Republican or Democrat has to consider increasing the debt the nation should be in for a fight. This money belongs to the taxpayers and future taxpayers, not the politicians.
Increasing debt with no conditions is the acme of stupidity. The Democrats, led by Reid, Obama and Pelosi are telling the American people that how they spend our money is not important. I beg to differ.
The sad thing is that for the GOP leadership they have turned an easy victory into a defeat. How can the Democrats continue to support reckless spending of our hard earned dollars? If you are losing leverage in the debate it is simply because you are not making the case. Increasing the debt limit haphazardly is bad at any time. When our economy is weak and the Fed is printing money it becomes much worse. Many do not realize it but the fact is when the Fed pumps money into the economy it does so by creating debt. What this means is that for every dollar created by the FED an IOU is created and given to the taxpayer. Thus every bit of money printed requires even more money to be printed! This is a rabbit you never catch.
If you had not banished the conservatives to the wilderness you could have built a logical, rational argument that the ACA and the debt limit are intertwined. I remember a time when we as Republicans would argue that the best thing we can do for the nation is to grow the economy. I think if Ronald Reagan were alive he would have made the case that if we can’t defund the ACA we must delay it for two years. During that time he would have pushed for tax cuts and massive cuts in the regulatory agencies that are strangling business and capital. This rising tide of economic growth would have helped the middle class, the teachers and autoworkers and the government itself.

4. Will you stop the Senate immigration bill?

The people of the 8th district in Ohio are suffering from the same economic weakness as most of those in the rest of the nation. Unemployment is high and housing prices are rebounding slowly. Yet somehow the Democrats have convinced you that adding more people to a saturated labor pool is a good idea. This goes against every rational economic school of thought in history.
The bill also gives businesses an incentive to fire American citizens and higher PRIs (Permanent Resident Immigrants). In fact the incentive is a whopping $5,000! Increasing the labor pool will lower wages for all. It will make it much harder for entry level and semi-skilled workers to get a job. It will lower housing prices. (How can fewer dollars chasing a product increase price?) And it will reduce tax revenues for Social Security and Medicare. (Again, lower wages and lower tax revenues).
If the nation were experiencing robust economic growth and unemployment rates were below 3.5% then it would be time to increase immigration. Now it is economic suicide. If as you and so many Democrats have stated the immigration system is broken, how would we know? In 1987 we were told that amnesty would fix the problem. In the 1990s we were told that NAFTA would fix the problem. Now we are told that more words on paper (and more amnesty) will finally fix the problem. It is ridiculous to suggest our immigration system is broken. We have not sealed the border and we don’t enforce the laws we have. More words on paper will not “fix” the problem.
Mr. Boehner you have represented the people of Ohio for 23 years. You have become detached from your constituents and beholden to interests that we don’t care about. The career politician can never maintain his duty as citizen legislator and representative of the people. Rarely in the course of history has a nation’s watershed moment been so obvious to the casual observer. The path to prosperity is well lit. We must return to the time-tested values of thrift, hard work and personal responsibility. The politician must exercise the same caution with the people’s tax money as we do with our money in the household. We the people who pay the taxes have tightened our belts for years. It is time for you to do the same.

Compromise is not a virtue and moderation is not a sign of intelligence.

Eric Gurr
Republican primary challenger 8th district of Ohio
[email protected]