By Arturo Garcia
(December 18, 2013)After applauding the congressional bipartisan budget deal last week, Jon Stewart couldn’t help but notice on Tuesday how quickly conservatives and Tea Party Republicans were moving to discredit the agreement, so much so that even House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) had to ask, “Are you kidding me?”
“That was an awfully abrupt emotional change,” Stewart observed, adding, “That was pro wrestling-level rhetoric. Clearly Boehner’s trying to make a catchphrase happen.”
Stewart pointed out that the deal, which is expected to pass in the Senate this week, has been slammed on multiple occasions by other conservatives, including Fox News contributor Andrew Napolitano, who ripped Boehner for being willing to work with Democrats.
“When did the Democrats become to Republicans what pork is to the devout?” Stewart wondered. “Boehner helped broker the most basic of compromises to keep the government functioning at its current incredibly pathetic levels, with a promise of no shutdowns for a couple of years. It’d be like if Mayor Rob Ford’s New Year’s resolution was, ‘I promise to maintain my present level of crack smoking.’”
But more surprisingly for Stewart, another Tea Party favorite, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), was also catching flack for “selling out” after crafting the deal with Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) so soon after being promoted as “a golden child whose fiscal genius will lead us to the promised land, where [Ronald] Reagan will rise once more.”
Conservatives’ obsession with finding someone further and further to the right, Stewart said, had led to even stalwart Republicans like Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) — he of the Johnny Cash-like campaign ads — facing primary challenges, even after coming in second in a measure of conservative senators, trailing only “Alaska’s representative, Painting of Jesus drilling for Oil.”
Not even Reagan, Stewart found, was safe, with the likes of Sarah Palin saying Republicans “need to stop worshipping” the former president.
“When Ronald Reagan’s just another Hollywood liberal, you gotta say to your party, ‘Are you kidding me?’” Stewart said.