The House Republicans have just selected their new leadership team. John Boehner (R-Oompa Loompa) will stay in charge of the dwindling Republican minority, but the second and third in commands will now be Eric Cantor and Mike Pence, two congressmen whose loyalty to the far right is only rivaled by their own stupidity.
There are so, so many bits of Cantor's public appearances I could use here to illustrate just how terrific this is for the Democrats, but I'll go with this one from February 2007, when Cantor insisted that Congress has no constitutional authority in declaring war.
In case you can't watch video at work, or just want to be spared the sound of his voice, here's a transcript:
MATTHEWS: This isn‘t an option question. This isn‘t multiple choice.This assclown doesn't even understand the fundamental powers of Congress, and he's now the second most powerful Republican there. Awesome.
Right now, February 8, 2007, do you believe we should go to war with Iran?
CANTOR: I‘ll leave that decision up to the commanders on the ground and those in our military ...
MATTHEWS: Commanders on the ground whether we go to war with another country?
CANTOR: I will leave the decisions in the military arena to—this is exactly the point.
MATTHEWS: This is Barry Goldwater taking. He used to say that.
Regional commanders can decide whether we want it use nuclear weapons. You‘re obviously saying soldiers should decide which country to go to war with.
CANTOR: I‘m here to say the military experts are those which might come up with the recommendation to the commander in chief that makes the decision. It is silly for us to expect .
MATTHEWS: I‘m not talking — I just asked you a very simple question .
CANTOR: We‘re going 535 commanders in chief .
MATTHEWS: I‘ve never heard of anything like this in my life. Never in my life.
ISRAEL: Congress has a constitutional responsibility to decide whether we‘re going to war or not. That‘s what we‘re elected to do. Those are the debates we should have.
CANTOR: Every president since...
MATTHEWS: The idea of declaring war as a soldier is unimaginable. ...
Let me ask you Congressman Cantor, very clearly, to clear up our discussion, if the U.S. Congress were to discuss tomorrow morning whether to declare war on Iran, would you vote yay?
CANTOR: This congress is not going to do that because it‘s the commander in chief‘s role, Chris, and Steve knows that as well. It‘s not Congress that will ask for that. It is the commander in chief that will make that decision. Every president whether republican or Republican or Democrat since the War Powers Act was in place has interpreted it as being the commander in chief‘s role to do that.
MATTHEWS: Would you support the president if he declared war in Iran tomorrow morning? As things are right now.
CANTOR: I will support what is in the best interest of securing this homeland and providing our troops with what they need and if there is a threat on the ground in Iraq and in the region that our troops need us, I will support them and that‘s exactly the point on this Iraqi resolution because the Democrats want to have their cake and eat it, too. This is a nonbinding resolution. It‘s a sense of Congress. It doesn‘t mean anything. In fact it pollutes the message and sends the wrong message to our troops.
MATTHEWS: Congressman Israel, what‘s the role of Congress in war and peace?
ISRAEL: Congress under the Constitution of the United States authorizes war. The War Powers Act requires Congress to vote on whether we should insert troops into hostile situations. The law is clear.
CANTOR: Absolutely not.
ISRAEL: Come on, Eric.
CANTOR: As a commander in chief the constitution gives .
MATTHEWS: Congressman Cantor, why did the president ask for approval of Congress before he went to Iraq?
CANTOR: I certainly think his counsel gave him guidance why he need to do that but the Constitution gives the commander in chief the right to send our troops into battle.
MATTHEWS: Maybe when it comes to war we don‘t need a Congress according to that.