James Fallows said it best a few days before the oncoming government shutdown. This was never a struggle between two parties or two branches of government. The shutdown battle has been waged between two wings of the Republican party.
Robert Costa takes us inside the chasm between House Republican factions. And Ezra Klein gets the numbers on either side in an interview with Costa.
On the moderate side, we have roughly 100 veteran lawmakers and committee leaders. These are the traditional centers of power within the caucus. The apparent leader of this faction is Peter King, who is unencumbered by the demands of leadership positions.
Costa estimates that the die-hard side consists of 30-40 members, but they have an additional 60-100 Republicans running chicken-shit scared.
Whatever happens in the coming days, it won't be due to a strong Speaker; any deal will have to be worked out in the trenches of the Republican party's internal struggle.
Fallows, Costa, and Klein appear to be the best reporters in Washington right now; I'd stay tuned to their channels for the rest of this drama.