Boehner says one-in-three chance GOP could lose the House
April 23rd, 2012
08:07 PM ET
2 years ago

Boehner says one-in-three chance GOP could lose the House

Washington (CNN) - House Speaker John Boehner is sounding some alarm bells, saying "there's a one-in-three chance" Republicans could lose control of the House of Representatives in 2012.

Boehner sounded less than confident he would retain his gavel in an interview slated to air Tuesday on Fox News.

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"I would say that there is a two-in-three chance that we win control of the House again but there's a one-in-three chance that we could lose and I'm being myself, frank," Boehner told Fox News, according to a transcript of the interview.

Until now the speaker has not raised any concerns about his party's chances to keep control of the House this fall, and it's unusual for a top party leader to publicly express a pessimistic outlook.

But a spokesman for Boehner's political arm said the speaker was being "candid" and his comments were a deliberate move to remind supporters and potential donors that House Republicans need support this fall.

"We're looking at both sides of the coin," Cory Fritz told CNN. "Of course there is a chance that we could lose and we want to make sure we're doing everything we can so that our members have the resources they need so they can run and win."

Fritz noted there's a perception among some supporters that the "House is kind of lock," but he stressed "it would be mistake for anyone to take that for granted."

Supporters and donors have largely focused on the race for the White House and taking control of the Senate rather than House races. House Democrats would have to pick up 25 seats to retake the majority in the House.

Boehner also told Fox, "we've got a big challenge and we've got work to do."

A senior House GOP leadership aide echoed the need to highlight the importance of the House to the party's agenda for 2012.

"If you're a Republican, no matter what you want to do it's not going to matter if we don't keep the House," the aide said. "We've got to be prepared and people need to realize that."

In the interview, the speaker pointed out there are 32 districts in states where "there is no presidential campaign going to be run, no big Senate race." Specifically Boehner called 18 Congressional districts in California, New York and Illinois "orphan districts," where Romney is not expected to win, and said they are "frankly pretty vulnerable."

Asked about the House GOP candidates in those districts, Fritz said, "The goal is to get others to see that we have a lot of members in these states that need help."

So far Democrats have shown some optimism about the odds of regaining the majority in the House, but have been careful not to sound overconfident.

Asked last week to predict if Democrats could win back the House, their campaign chief, New York Rep. Steve Israel told CNN, "the House is in range."

The number two House Democrat Rep. Steny Hoyer told reporters last month if the economic recovery continued, "our chances are reasonably good that we can take back the House."

Also see:

Giuliani endorses Romney, downplays being running mate

Huntsman compares GOP to Communist Party of China

RNC formally backs Walker in recall


Filed under: 2012 • John Boehner
soundoff (331 Responses)
  1. kris

    They deserve to all be fired for obstructing a recovering government....

    They make it painfully obvious that all they do is protect the wealthiest wealth and hell with everyhting else. That's going to win you a lot of elections, NOT!

    April 24, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  2. ty

    the gop in general are traitors.when the country was suffering the way it was when obama took office because of what the GOP/Bush did to it, to then block and filibuster any hope of recovery in favor of gain for their party, is criminal. i will NEVER vote for a GOP candidate again. i am 1000% disgusted with the GOP lies, deceptions and attacks on women, minorities,gays,the poor and america.

    April 24, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  3. GI Joe

    Oh come on people, they HAVE done something.

    They named a post office and took away women's rights.

    April 24, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  4. LolDems

    The Republican House has correctly identified the major economic problem as spending, not income (taxes). SS has been in trouble for awhile, the news just coming to light. We all can thank the Republican House for responsible economic stewardship to insist programs are actually paid for before legislated. Such a novel concept for leftylibdems, they howl in protest, unable to see past their own self-interest. Keep the House Republican, turn the Senate and Executive Office, and restore America to growth and prosperity and put the failed socialist experiment in our rearview mirror.

    April 24, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  5. PROUD FEMALE DEM IN NC

    One can only hope he's right. Throw the bums out. Obama 2012!!!

    April 24, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  6. AmericanSam

    Dems ain't perfect, but GOP leaders are completely turrible. Deregulation deregulation deregulation, and nevermind that that's what caused the 2008 crisis! DEREGULATION GARARALRJ:LAKWJR:OIWUER

    April 24, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. Republican who supports President Obama

    This congress is probably the least productive in history. The GOP put party ahead of the people. What was their first promise – Creating Jobs. What did they do instead – wasted time creating resolutions that never passed so they can revolt against our President. A President who is trying to help the American people and this country.

    Time to get the broom out and clean up Congress. If they want to appease the tea party only they can sit on the sidelines whiile ADULTS work on bi-partisanship.

    April 24, 2012 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  8. YtownSports

    Do you think that could have anything to do with Boehner's inneffective "leadership" or the fact that the GOP has allowed the Democrats to control the agenda? The Republicans had a golden opportunity to unseat a President who has many flaws, to strengthen their advantage in the House, and to get a majority in the Senate, but they have self-destructed at every turn by playing into the hands of the Democrats. The GOP is horrible at clearly defining its own agenda while also making a clear case for why ideas & policies from the left are flawed. Instead, they get caught up in a battle of soundbites and scraps over insignificant issues while running inept campaigns. Have they forgotten 2010?

    April 24, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  9. Ryan

    I hope there's no chance at all of them retaining the House. I hate that we have to deal with another 7 months of these loons, let alone another two-year term.

    April 24, 2012 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  10. PROUD FEMALE DEM IN NC

    For Brian in D.C.... sounds like you are drinking the FOX( Republican/ Tea Party) channel kool-aid... Think for yourself. FOX News talking heads are a bunch of hate mongering, know nothing losers. unfair and imbalanced. Obama 2012!!!

    April 24, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  11. caeser

    How dare the Democrats,redistribution of wealth indeed and after the rich worked so hard to steal it from us.

    April 24, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  12. WatchDawg

    ..could this be the first of the RATS leaving the sinking ship...

    April 24, 2012 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  13. The Real Tom Paine

    -Ray E. (Georgia)

    If you want to keep the ever growing Nanny State and the Nero Model, then vote democrat. If you believe in Personal Responsibility then Vote Republician. Realise the "Wonderful people" that gave you all the problems the country now faces, are abandoning ship in droves.
    **********************************************
    If you don't believe in the " Nanny State", than move away from a state that take more federal dollars than it send in, like, say, Georgia. I would suggest you come here, but you obviously don't want to work. Complaining does not qualify as a job, unless you live in the South and register as a Repub.

    April 24, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  14. Puddin

    Why would anyone vote for a Repub? This bunch has done nothing but throw a "monkey-wrench" into any idea the president put out there, even if they knew it would help to get the country moving again after the Repub financial meltdown. I can still see McConnel standing at the mike with his sarcastic expression after the Repubs won the House. "Now, our highest priority is to defeat Obama." Their highest priority is to help get this country moving again. I notice we don't hear much from him, Cantor or Boehner currently. They want to appear to be "making nice" now that the election is closer. The American citizens will remember all the negative behavior.

    April 24, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  15. Ant

    Only two things GOP do is cut and give 1% taxe break. What do you expect would happen to them?

    April 24, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  16. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    More proof Republicans spend more time worrying about their jobs and doing nothing to help the American people get jobs. Boehner will cry when he's ousted.

    April 24, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  17. MNTaxpayer

    brian in dc

    fact is neither party can see past their extreme elements and make any kind of logical compromise. But who's fault is it? we voted of all of these clowns, and look at the disourse in these blogs. Someone criticizes Boehner and your first reaction is, NO, it's Reid. Well both sides in this congress are worthless party hacks. Let's vote the whole lot of them out so they can get on with their lobbying and speaking careers.

    April 24, 2012 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  18. The Other Dale

    "If you want to keep the ever growing Nanny State and the Nero Model, then vote Republican If you believe in Personal Responsibility then Vote Democrat."

    Fixed that for you, Ray G, as it makes more sense with your second statement:

    "Realise the 'Wonderful people' that gave you all the problems the country now faces, are abandoning ship in droves."

    This part was fine, as you appear to agree that it's Tea Partiers and Republicans are the ones who created the problems and who are abandoning ship in droves now. Certainly Boehner appears to think so.

    April 24, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  19. Cal

    Nothing has worked well when either party controlled the House, Senate, and Presidency. We have prospered most when we had a good leader like Reagan or Clinton and a divided House and Senate. The country has already seen what utter failure looks like when we had two years of Democratic majorities with our current incompetent President leading. The US can't take another four years of the junior varsity of Obama and company supposedly leading and if they controlled both Houses we might never recover.

    April 24, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  20. steve

    Congressional Republicans: where are the jobs? Redistribution of wealth is not a plan but social engineering.

    April 24, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  21. DRTSAT

    Neither side will say anything about the American people and doing the work of the country. They will, however, say they need to take control of the House (Democrats) or say they need to retain control of the House (Republicans). All to push stupid partisan agendas. Again, this is both sides doing this. They need to actually start working together instead of trying to figure out how best to knife each other in the back.

    April 24, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  22. Jess C

    Boot 'em out and take away their lifetime benefits. They are a disgrace to this country by focusing their time on ridiculous issues (social ones that were solved 50 yrs. ago) and not following through on their jobs "promises" of 2010. You who voted for them in 2010 need to look at how that worked for the country....it hasn't. We need an infrastructure bill that would put people back to work and repair our bridges and highways. There's a reason this Congress is the lowest rated in history. Time to go!

    April 24, 2012 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  23. clarke

    When they lose their seats, they have no one to blame but themselves. What the GOP doesn't get, they are to serve all the people, no matter, race, color or greed and party line. Not everyone in this Nation is GOP , nor DEM. We are a wonderful mix of everything. The GOP does not get it. I find them to be self serving at best, these are the boys and girls that were voted in. They made many promises and all of us sheep voted them in. Name me one that congress kept. BAA< BAA. It seems everyone lives in a glass house

    April 24, 2012 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  24. FormerTeaPartyPerson

    I will go one step further. I think there is better than 2 in 3 chance that Obama will be re-elected, and the Dems will retake the House and retain the Senate. Here's my logic: The Democrats are "playing" chess, while the Republicans are "playing" checkers. I predict that soon Obama will put forth another deficit plan; endorsing $3 of cuts for every one dollar of tax increase. He will use Grover Norquist pledge against the Republicans that have already signed the pledge. The American voters will endorse Obama's plan by "cleaning" House. I am saying this as a loyal Republican myself. The Republican Leadership must convince Grover to disavow the pledge, or history will soon record that one man was responsible for the destruction of our Party. I hope I am wrong, but unfortunately I seem to have an understanding of the "cause and effects" of our national politics. I bet no one has heard of this theory before now!

    April 24, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  25. Sorensen

    For once, he is right. The whole GOP ship is beginning to sink.

    April 24, 2012 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
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