John Boehner on Jay Leno: GOP Infighting ‘Maybe’ the Worst I’ve Ever Seen

None

National Journal
Brian Resnick
Jan. 24, 2014, 3 a.m.

On Republican infighting: 

LENO: Now this GOP in­fight­ing. Is this the worst you’ve ever seen it?

BOEHNER: Oh, no. Well, maybe it is. [Laughter.] It’s bad.

{{ BIZOBJ (video: 4672) }}

Two white men of a cer­tain age who are not as pop­u­lar as they once were sit down to talk polit­ics, spray tans, and health care. 

That’s a setup for a bad joke, but it happened Thursday night on NBC. 

House Speak­er John Boehner joined Jay Leno on The To­night Show and took some jabs at his fel­low Re­pub­lic­ans. Leno, who asked some very sober ques­tions (“Did your par­ents live to see your suc­cess?”) said he had wanted the speak­er on the show for some time. Be­cause Leno is end­ing his ten­ure on the show next month, Boehner agreed.

“I heard you go­ing — this show was about over and I thought I’d bet­ter get here be­fore it was too late,” Boehner said at the be­gin­ning of the in­ter­view.

“I was go­ing to say the same thing for you,” Leno quickly replied. 

Zing.

Here are the high­lights from the tran­script.

On Re­pub­lic­an in­fight­ing: 

LENO: Now this GOP in­fight­ing. Is this the worst you’ve ever seen it?

BOEHNER: Oh, no. Well, maybe it is. [Laughter.] It’s bad.

On how the Re­pub­lic­ans caused the gov­ern­ment shut­down:

BOEHNER: Listen, I told my col­leagues in Ju­ly, I didn’t think shut­ting down the gov­ern­ment over Obama­care [would] work be­cause the pres­id­ent said I’m not go­ing to ne­go­ti­ate. And so I told them in Au­gust. Prob­ably not a good idea. Told them in early Septem­ber.

So I said, do you want to fight this fight? I’ll go fight the fight with you. But it was a very pre­dict­able dis­aster. And so the soon­er we got it over with the bet­ter. But re­mem­ber the is­sue. The is­sue was, we wanted to delay Obama­care for a year be­cause it wasn’t ready. Then we asked them to delay the in­di­vidu­al man­date for a year. So we were fight­ing for the right things; I just thought tac­tic­ally it was not the right way to do it.

On his ex­traordin­ary com­plex­ion:

BOEHNER: Listen, listen, I play golf. I ride a bike, I cut my own grass, ride a bike. And my moth­er is dark-com­plec­ted [sic] so I’m a little dark.

LENO: So, there’s no tan­ning bed.

BOEHNER: There’s no tan­ning bed.

LENO: There’s no tan­ning bed.

BOEHNER: There’s no spray. Nev­er. Not once, nev­er, ever.

LENO: Nev­er a spray tan?

BOEHNER: Noth­ing.

On his job as speak­er:

BOEHNER: Well, people think, all right, you’re the speak­er, you’re the lead­er. They don’t real­ize I’ve got a a lot of oth­er roles that I play. You know, some mem­bers, I have to be the big-broth­er fig­ure. Some I have to be the fath­er fig­ure. Oth­ers I have to be the dean of stu­dents or the prin­cip­al. Some of them I have to be the Gestapo.

On 2016:

LENO: Who do you like in 2016? For the Re­pub­lic­ans?

BOEHNER: Well, listen, I’m not en­dors­ing any­body, but [former Flor­ida Gov.] Jeb Bush is my friend, and I frankly think he would make a great pres­id­ent.

On run­ning for pres­id­ent him­self:

LENO: You ever think of run­ning for pres­id­ent?

BOEHNER: No.

LENO: No? Do you want to show what you did you when I asked you that ques­tion be­fore? Do you want to show them what you told me?

BOEHNER: Listen, I like to play golf. I like to cut my own grass. You know, I do drink red wine. I smoke ci­gar­ettes, and I’m not giv­ing that up to be pres­id­ent of the United States.

On how the Republicans caused the government shutdown:

BOEHNER: Listen, I told my col­leagues in Ju­ly, I didn’t think shut­ting down the gov­ern­ment over Obama­care [would] work be­cause the pres­id­ent said I’m not go­ing to ne­go­ti­ate. And so I told them in Au­gust. Prob­ably not a good idea. Told them in early Septem­ber.

So I said, do you want to fight this fight? I’ll go fight the fight with you. But it was a very pre­dict­able dis­aster. And so the soon­er we got it over with the bet­ter. But re­mem­ber the is­sue. The is­sue was, we wanted to delay Obama­care for a year be­cause it wasn’t ready. Then we asked them to delay the in­di­vidu­al man­date for a year. So we were fight­ing for the right things; I just thought tac­tic­ally it was not the right way to do it.

On his extraordinary complexion:

BOEHNER: Listen, listen, I play golf. I ride a bike, I cut my own grass, ride a bike. And my moth­er is dark-com­plec­ted [sic] so I’m a little dark.

LENO: So, there’s no tan­ning bed.

BOEHNER: There’s no tan­ning bed.

LENO: There’s no tan­ning bed.

BOEHNER: There’s no spray. Nev­er. Not once, nev­er, ever.

LENO: Nev­er a spray tan?

BOEHNER: Noth­ing.

On his job as speaker:

BOEHNER: Well, people think, all right, you’re the speak­er, you’re the lead­er. They don’t real­ize I’ve got a a lot of oth­er roles that I play. You know, some mem­bers, I have to be the big-broth­er fig­ure. Some I have to be the fath­er fig­ure. Oth­ers I have to be the dean of stu­dents or the prin­cip­al. Some of them I have to be the Gestapo.

On 2016:

LENO: Who do you like in 2016? For the Re­pub­lic­ans?

BOEHNER: Well, listen, I’m not en­dors­ing any­body, but [former Flor­ida Gov.] Jeb Bush is my friend, and I frankly think he would make a great pres­id­ent.

On running for president himself:

LENO: You ever think of run­ning for pres­id­ent?

BOEHNER: No.

LENO: No? Do you want to show what you did you when I asked you that ques­tion be­fore? Do you want to show them what you told me?

BOEHNER: Listen, I like to play golf. I like to cut my own grass. You know, I do drink red wine. I smoke ci­gar­ettes, and I’m not giv­ing that up to be pres­id­ent of the United States.

What We're Following See More »
‘PULLING A TRUMP’
GOP Budget Chiefs Won’t Invite Administration to Testify
1 days ago
THE DETAILS

The administration will release its 2017 budget blueprint tomorrow, but the House and Senate budget committees won’t be inviting anyone from the White House to come talk about it. “The chairmen of the House and Senate Budget committees released a joint statement saying it simply wasn’t worth their time” to hear from OMB Director Shaun Donovan. Accusing the members of pulling a “Donald Trump,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the move “raises some questions about how confident they are about the kinds of arguments that they could make.”

Source:
A DARK CLOUD OVER TRUMP?
Snowstorm Could Impact Primary Turnout
1 days ago
THE LATEST

A snowstorm is supposed to hit New Hampshire today and “linger into Primary Tuesday.” GOP consultant Ron Kaufman said lower turnout should help candidates who have spent a lot of time in the state tending to retail politicking. Donald Trump “has acknowledged that he needs to step up his ground-game, and a heavy snowfall could depress his figures relative to more organized candidates.”

Source:
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
A Shake-Up in the Offing in the Clinton Camp?
1 days ago
THE DETAILS

Anticipating a primary loss in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Hillary and Bill Clinton “are considering staffing and strategy changes” to their campaign. Sources tell Politico that the Clintons are likely to layer over top officials with experienced talent, rather than fire their staff en masse.

Source:
THE LAST ROUND OF NEW HAMPSHIRE POLLS
Trump Is Still Ahead, but Who’s in Second?
18 hours ago
THE LATEST

We may not be talking about New Hampshire primary polls for another three-and-a-half years, so here goes:

  • American Research Group’s tracking poll has Donald Trump in the lead with 30% support, followed by Marco Rubio and John Kasich tying for second place at 16%. On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders leads Hillary Clinton 53%-41%.
  • The 7 News/UMass Lowell tracking poll has Trump way out front with 34%, followed by Rubio and Ted Cruz with 13% apiece. Among the Democrats, Sanders is in front 56%-40%.
  • A Gravis poll puts Trump ahead with 28%, followed by Kasich with 17% and Rubio with 15%.
IT’S ALL ABOUT SECOND PLACE
CNN Calls the Primary for Sanders and Trump
5 hours ago
THE LATEST

Well that didn’t take long. CNN has already declared Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump the winners of the New Hampshire primary, leaving the rest of the candidates to fight for the scraps. Five minutes later, the Associated Press echoed CNN’s call.

Source:
×