House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) Twitter feed is a surprisingly aggressive operation, which occasionally leads to some embarrassing errors. Take today, for example.
This morning, the Speaker tweeted his five-point jobs plan, numbered one through five, which was left entirely blank – making it appear as if the Republican plan to create jobs simply doesn’t exist.
It was obviously just a mix-up, of course, and Boehner almost certainly has nothing to do with his own tweets. But there’s a substantive element to this that shouldn’t just be laughed off. Danny Vinik explained:
Liberals have had quite a bit of fun with this on Twitter (as I have), but Boehner accidentally told the truth in that tweet. The Republican Party doesn’t have and has never had a jobs plan during the Obama presidency. […]That’s the cruel irony in Boehner’s tweet. It would be funny, but it represents the massive economic damage that the Republican Party has unnecessarily inflicted on the country the past six years. And that’s not funny at all.
Indeed, the only part of the Speaker’s tweet that wasn’t a mistake was a link to the actual five-point plan, which only helped reinforce the fact that the Republican jobs agenda is little more than a mirage.
The “five key things” policymakers should do, Boehner said, is “reform our tax code,” “solve our spending problem,” “reform our legal system,” “reform our regulatory system,” and “improve our education system.”
Vague platitudes, however, do not a policy agenda make. For that matter, none of these five slogans are backed up by real, substantive proposals – except maybe tax reform, which Boehner and House Republican leaders killed earlier this year – and none of them addresses the parts of the domestic economy most in need of policymakers’ attention.
Making matters slightly worse, Boehner’s mistaken tweet comes against the backdrop of the Speaker’s claims that House Republicans have passed more than 40 jobs bills – a claim that’s demonstrably untrue.
Technical flops can be funny, but what matters here is Boehner’s accidental honesty. House Republicans have no meaningful legislative accomplishments to show for their four years in the majority; they have no real platform for 2014; and they have no credible plans for governing in the near future.
The problem with the tweet isn’t that it’s blank; the problem is that it’s true.