McCarthy and Boehner—once masters of chaos, now its victims
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) (R) and House Majority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (L) speak to reporters at a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington October 7, 2015. McCarthy is vying for Boehner's House Speaker position at the end of the month.     REUTERS/Gary Cameron     - RTS3F0KIt's been an amazing two weeks. The forces of lunatic fringe wingnut nihilism pushed Boehner into an unexpected early retirement, and there's a good chance they also played a role in McCarthy's equally shocking demise as Boehner's heir apparent. To say the House is an ungovernable tire-fire is an extreme understatement.
But there's an even deeper reason for this state of affairs, one that goes beyond the Republican cabal's endless civil war: gerrymandering. Yep, that's absolutely right. In 2012, candidates who ran for the House as Democrats won 1.4 million more votes nationwide than those on the Republican ticket, yet Republicans still managed to retain control of the House. That was only possible because they drew a majority of the country's congressional districts.
With fair maps, though, Democrats would have an excellent shot at returning to power, and unlike Republicans, they have their act together. Nancy Pelosi was twice elected speaker without any fuss, and if Democrats won back the majority, she easily would be again. We'd actually have a properly functioning Congress instead of the nightmare hellscape Republicans have visited on us.
But there's actually something we can do about this: We need to elect more Democrats to state legislatures around the nation, so that Republicans can't run the table on us during the next round of redistricting in 2020. The fight starts this year in Virginia, where Democrats have a great chance to win back the state Senate next month and are poised to make gains in the state House as well.
It's a long-term project, but it's at the very top of the list for progressives. That's why we've endorsed half a dozen great Democrats who are running for the state legislature in Virginia.
So please donate $1 to all six Virginia Democrats and start the process of winning back the House from the chaos-loving maniacs called Republicans.