In an April 28 piece for Vox, editor-in-chief Ezra Klein noted that former Republican House Speaker John Boehner recently validated the critique that the Republican Party is no longer a healthy political party devoted to governing.
During a recent talk at Stanford University, Boehner harshly criticized Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz as “Lucifer in the flesh,” called the conservative House Freedom Caucus “knuckleheads” and “goofballs,” and said Ronald Reagan “would be the most moderate Republican elected today.”
Klein wrote that “Boehner is validating one of the most persistent and controversial critiques of the modern Republican Party” -- that they are the central problem in politics today. He concluded:
Zoom out, and here is the condition of the modern Republican Party. Despite significant down-ballot strength, it has lost the popular vote in five of the last six presidential elections, and it looks likely to lose this one, too. The party has completely lost control of its own nominating process, and its choice now is to either elect Donald Trump, a candidate who isn't really a Republican and might be a historic disaster for the party, or risk a schism by trying to rip the nomination away from Trump amidst a contested convention. Meanwhile, John Boehner, the most powerful Republican elected official from 2008 to 2015, resigned in frustration last year and is now saying his party has been captured by idiots and zealots.
Congressional scholars Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein have repeatedly warned the media and political observers that the core of Washington’s dysfunction “lies with the Republican Party." Mann and Ornstein issued their warning years ago, but many have been slow to adopt their conclusions.