Speaking to a crowd of supporters in his home district on Thursday, Speaker of the House John Boehner repeated his claim that he wants to pass immigration reform this year and mocked unnamed members of his caucus for their reluctance to take on such a politically fraught topic.
"Here's the attitude," Boehner said in reference to those who want to stay away from the immigration issue. "'Ohhhh. Don't make me do this! Ohhhh! This is too hard!" Boehner scrunched up his face and raised his voice while pretending to be his colleagues and drew some laughs from the audience.
"We get elected to make choices," Boehner continued, this time not in character. "We get elected to solve problems and it's remarkable to me how many of my colleagues just don't want to."
"They'll take the path of least resistance," he added.
Boehner's gibe — which his spokesperson dismissed, saying "you only tease the ones you love" — is indicative of a larger struggle going on within the GOP. While many national party elites see reform as an almost existential necessity, a large number of the Republican rank-and-file are opposed to "amnesty" (and often subscribe to a somewhat elastic definition of the term).
Boehner has long been viewed with suspicion by many of the Tea Party-aligned members of his caucus, with his support for reform being one of the chief reasons why.
You can watch Boehner flex his thespian muscles below: