Late Speaker Ensured His Notoriety As Republican Party Crumbled Over “Obamacare” Fight In 2013
John Boehner, who died peacefully at his home yesterday, gained his notoriety as the leader of the Republican House majority in 2013 when he failed to rein in a small group of Republican Congresspeople who attempted to prevent the implementation of the U.S.’s Affordable Care Act, then termed “Obamacare.” Boehner’s decision to let this group – the so-called “Tea Party” wing of the party – in effect bring the government of the United States to a standstill is widely regarded as the beginning of the end of the Republican Party. The Republican Party was generally blamed for the shutdown, whose economic effects were short of disastrous, but very painful for a country on the brink of a strong recovery from the Second Great Depression that started in 2008.
As a result of the showdown with the Republican Party, a formal split began that year. The resulting components – the Conservative Party, made up of less extreme Republicans, and the Tea Party, made up of the old Tea Party wing – have played a significantly reduced role in politics in the years since.