During an interview recently with the Wisconsin State Journal, House Speaker Paul Ryan warned that his failures as Speaker, and the overall Republican failure to do anything at all in the past few months, could easily lead to a depression in voter turnout among Republicans in the 2018 midterms, handing a victory to the Democrats. Of course, if he enacts his horrible plans then he will also likely be voted out, so this is actually a lose-lose situation for Paul. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins discusses this.


Just a week ago, House Speaker, Paul Ryan, was telling reporters that all those failures he has suffered in recent months have only served to make him stronger. He is a better House Speaker for having experienced those failures, like the failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the failure to put in place a new Republican healthcare plan, and the failure of tax reform so far, and the failure of everything else that he’s tried to do since taking over for John Boehner.

However, just a few days after that, Paul Ryan gave another interview to the Wisconsin State Journal where he said quite the opposite, not that those failures made him stronger, but that he understands and he wants the rest of his Republican Party to understand that those failures, or inability to do anything, is going to depress the voter turnout among Republicans in 2018 and effectively hand the House of Representatives back over to the Democratic Party.

Here’s the thing. Paul Ryan has found himself between a rock and a hard place at this point. He’s warning his fellow Republicans that if we continue to show that we can’t even get along with each other and that we can’t pass a single bill, then people aren’t going to show up in 2018 to vote us back into office. On the other hand, and this is what Paul Ryan has not said publicly but I think he understands it as well, if they were to pass all of the horrible legislation that they want to pass, which includes tax cuts for the wealthy, repealing the Affordable Care Act, kicking 22 million people off their health insurance, replacing Obamacare with a tax cut for the wealthy basically, another tax cut for the wealthy, people aren’t going to support them anyway. Paul Ryan, in this situation, is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t.

The Republican Party in the United States has painted themselves into a corner and they have no way to get out of it. They’ve made these really, you know, impressive promises to the American public, yet they lack the know-how and the intelligence to actually fulfill those promises, promises like we’re going to repeal Obamacare and replace it with something better. Then, it turns out that their something better was just a set of tax cuts for the wealthy. They can’t do anything without accidentally turning it into a tax cut. I know they’re doing it on purpose, but even if they wanted to. I’m sure Paul Ryan probably walks into his kitchen in the morning to make some eggs and then turns out he actually just wrote a draft of a law that’s a tax cut, because that’s all his brain can do.

Republicans do not know how to lead, and Paul Ryan is starting to figure that out. He is concerned that the public is also figuring that out. Republicans cannot lead. They do not have any original ideas, and even if they did, they still wouldn’t have any good ideas. Their party has been stuck in neutral since the 1980s. You can look at damn near everything they have proposed this year and find a bill that mirrors that from the 1980s and the Reagan administration. That was the last time any Republicans had any brand new ideas. For the record, they were all pretty horrible and helped destroy America’s middle class, but they don’t care. They’ve got their agenda. They’ve got their marching orders from their wealthy donors, and they’re going to do whatever it takes to pass that agenda, even though they understand it will eventually cost every single one of them their seat in the House of Representatives. Hopefully that’s going to happen in 2018.

Farron Cousins is the executive editor of The Trial Lawyer magazine and a contributing writer at DeSmogBlog.com. He is the co-host / guest host for Ring of Fire Radio. His writings have appeared on Alternet, Truthout, and The Huffington Post. Farron received his bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of West Florida in 2005 and became a member of American MENSA in 2009. Follow him on Twitter @farronbalanced