Hard-slogging determination and the long view of things -- one couldn't wish upon John Boehner two attributes likelier to give new Republican House members glorious and much-desired success.
The slog to come will be arduous. Bloggers, pundits, Democratic activists and so on will shower abuse on Boehner no matter what he does. If, under him, the House goes "too far," the critics will rage about Tea Party extremism. If instead the House fails to turn up the gas as high as promised, the same voices will intone, with half smiles, "Told ya so."
Particular leaders of the reformist Right will likewise seethe if Boehner -- as these particular leaders see it -- asks for or accepts too little in the way of better treatment for the free marketplace and the constitutional ideal of limited government.
The speaker's task on such occasions will be to sort out the truth -- did I go too fast or just not fast enough? -- make adjustments, then push ahead, not minding the abuse, the obstructions, and the cries of doom and destruction. Nancy Pelosi, given as she was to the adoption of the worst ideas in politics, set the example of a political leader under fire. She put her head down and kept a-comin'.
And so should John Boehner, with eye and mind fixed steadily on the rewards in store -- however distant -- for political figures who do the right things in the right way. It would be nice for a change, Pelosi -- a monumental change.
William Murchison writes from Dallas. To find out more about William Murchison, and to see features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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