Speaker John Boehner's (I love writing that) speech today hit all of the right notes in focusing on humility and transparency, which have been characteristics sorely lacking among recent congressional leaders. Going forward, Speaker Boehner (I still love writing that) needs to maintain those perspectives, but also demonstrate that he is serious, in two important ways. First, he must be serious about governing the country in an adult fashion, which could include clamping down irresponsible rhetoric on the part of some of his members. Second, he must show that he is serious about addressing the budgetary and fiscal concerns of the American people, and the Tea Partiers in particular, who helped him earn his new title.
In two years, the voters will judge Speaker Boehner and his team on whether they were able to govern effectively, and whether they were able to start getting our fiscal situation under control. If he accomplishes those two things — and I recognize that it is a tall order — he will be judged a success, and will help usher in Republican leadership at other levels of government as well.