The GOP Civil War Begins

The morning after the election has brought an opening salvo in what could become a contentious battle of recriminations for the GOP.
The morning after the election has brought an opening salvo in what could become a contentious battle of recriminations for the GOP, as various factions lay blame and beg for immunity in what has been, since 2004, a slow disintegration of their power in Washington. Just after noon, House Republicans feathers began to ruffle, as it was reported that Majority Leader John Boehner released a letter to his colleagues, officially asking to retain his job:

I'm deeply disappointed by the outcome of Tuesday's election. But I'm equally committed to building a lasting majority on the reform principles that define us and inspire our citizens. For this reason, I'm writing today to announce my candidacy for Republican Leader in the 111th Congress, and to request the honor of your vote.

As your Leader, I've worked tirelessly for our team, and tried to lead by example. I'll always be straight with you, and I'll always be open to your ideas. You deserve nothing less. I can't ask for the best from you unless I'm willing to give it myself.

Winning the majority and rebuilding our party will require the best from all of us. But this is not unfamiliar territory. We've faced and overcome these challenges before, and working together as a bold, unified, and energetic team, we'll do it again.

I'm ready to get started today. I'm confident you are too. I look forward to speaking with you in person and outlining our plans for the future. It's time for the losing to stop. And my commitment to you is that it will.

I humbly ask for your support and the privilege of serving as House Republican Leader in the next Congress.

It's probably no coincidence that around the same time, word got out that Virginia Representative Eric Cantor was gunning to replace Roy Blunt as House Whip. Honestly, it's hard to see how any of the GOP leadership in the House survives -- these were the people who went schizo on the bailout bill, pinning their lack of support to the 5,437th instance of Nancy Pelosi criticizing George Bush, after all. And, who can forget their brilliant plan to center their re-election hopes around a slogan stolen from an anti-depressant?
Jason Linkins is an associate editor at the Huffington Post, based in Washington, DC.
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Election 2018