Meet one of the best friends of the next U.S. House speaker

To accompany a piece on his management style, today’s Wall Street Journal includes an attempt to chart the universe of John Boehner, who assumes the role of U.S. House speaker on Wednesday.

According to the graphic, Boehner’s three best friends in Washington (all Republican, of course) are Rep Tom Latham of Iowa, Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina – and Sen. Saxby Chambliss of Georgia.


Asked for a few details, a spokeswoman for Chambliss pointed us to an October article in the Washington Post on Boehner’s comeback, which included this:

In Washington, Boehner is surrounded by a cadre of loyal, dedicated staffers and former staff members that forms the innermost circle of what they call BoehnerLand. Jackson, his chief of staff and confidante, is revered as someone who can deliver him news that he won’t hear from anyone else.

“There have been times when [someone] might have mentioned, ‘Hey, John needs to think about this, you know.’ And rather than going to John, we’d go to Barry, because he can talk to him like nobody else,” said Sen. Saxby Chambliss, a former House member who is close to Boehner.

Boehner is not close friends with any of the other elected Republican leaders, including House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (Va.) and Rep. Mike Pence (Ind.), the No. 3 leader as chairman of the Republican Conference. Instead, he has a core group of friends from the rank and file in both the House and the Senate.

First among equals is Latham, who was elected in the last GOP wave, in 1994. Latham holds no leadership title and aspires to nothing more than higher seniority on the Appropriations Committee. He has free access to Boehner, serving as his eyes and ears on other lawmakers.

He and Latham are part of a “supper club” that also includes Chambliss and Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), another former House member. Along with other lawmakers, they can frequently be found dining at restaurants on Capitol Hill.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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13 comments Add your comment

Fist full of dollars

January 4th, 2011
12:49 pm

Enter your comments here

Bubble Boy

January 4th, 2011
12:57 pm

So what’s wrong with this?

I only talk to people who agree with me and live in my bubble too. So far it hasn’t caused me any problems. But then again I haven’t be out of my house in 16 years.

Mr. KnowitAll

January 4th, 2011
12:57 pm

Oh God. Did it HAVE to be Saxby? Oh man….ANYBODY but RINO Saxby………

Cobb GOP

January 4th, 2011
1:47 pm

This is no different than local politics. IS ANYONE LOOKING INTO THE HIRING PRACTICES OF COBB COUNTY? Has anyone figured out how they could award bonuses to early retirees and then re-hire them at higher salaries? Why does this stuff happen with no consequences. Just check the Tax Commission or Water Department…


January 4th, 2011
2:29 pm

Bubble Boy – Who said or hinted that there was anything wrong? The story is just a simple reporting of facts. No judgments were rendered in the story.

The Ghost of Lester Maddox

January 4th, 2011
2:44 pm

That rumbling noise y’all jsut heard was all of the lobbyists breaking their necks to rush gifts to Saxby’s offices.

I’ll bet Saxby has all kinds of “new” “friends” these days. Heh heh heh.


January 4th, 2011
3:26 pm

sounds more like a circle (of)jerks.


January 4th, 2011
3:27 pm

The collective of soft, squishy RINO’s. What a brain trust. We’re in deep….


January 4th, 2011
3:47 pm

they are all pretty lazy and like golf….good smoozers


January 4th, 2011
3:53 pm

I am NOT into “politics” and I do have SEVERAL friends THEN I have a “much smaller group of friends” that I feel MORE comfortable with in sharing my thoughts, etc!

So just WHAT is wrong with Boehner having a SMALL group of friends that he feels more comfortable with????

Last Man Standing

January 4th, 2011
5:46 pm


“So just WHAT is wrong with Boehner having a SMALL group of friends that he feels more comfortable with????”

It’s really quite simple: he is a Republican. Most of the bloggers here are democrats and NOTHING any Republican does will EVER be acceptable to them.

Burroughston Broch

January 4th, 2011
11:19 pm

Jim Galloway, why don’t you tell us how many Republican close friends that Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi have? Your biases are all too apparent.

Bill Orvis White

January 5th, 2011
7:05 am

This simply comforts me at night knowing that the man who will be the new manager has loyal workers who will see HIS agenda become successful. Dear Stuck-on-Stupid Secular Progressives: Say goodbye to the handouts. Say goodbye to illegal health care. Say goodbye to political correctness. Say goodbye to crap and fade, Social Insecurity, Mediraid, Mediscare and public screw-els (schools) & the Godless Department of Miseducation. Love, THE Honorable Speaker of the House, John Boehner (R) Ohio. What’s the big deal that the Speaker has a close circle of friends? Why is there a story here? This is just another example of the far-left liberal media creating a story that isn’t there. What about the union thugs in Godless New York City who didn’t want to clean up the snow? I never heard about it until I had to turn to FOX News. Everyone else was out to lunch on that story. Nooo, we have to hear that Mr. Boehner has friends!? What?!

@Burrougston Broch
I never once heard about Wiccan Pelosi’s close friends from the Left Coast and I’m sure there are many. I’m venturing to guess that there are plenty of close friends who pushed her into passing illegal health care, the gay agenda and enviro-whacko laws like crap and fade.

@Last Man Standing
I’m alone in the wilderness throughout much of the Internet and take a lot of flak from far-left liberal bloggers. But, I just remember that I’m on a crusade to spread the word of the Lord Almighty, the strict constructs of the Constitution and Ronald Reagan-style of conservatism. I don’t care what liberals sling back at me because it’s my strong faith and devotion to my church and family that gets me through the day.