Boehner Walking Away From Debt Deal?

Well.

“Despite good-faith efforts to find common ground, the White House will not pursue a bigger debt reduction agreement without tax hikes. I believe the best approach may be to focus on producing a smaller measure, based on the cuts identified in the Biden-led negotiations, that still meets our call for spending reforms and cuts greater than the amount of any debt limit increase.”

That’s Speaker Boehner’s statement after deficit talks with the administration seem to have hit an impasse over tax increases.

It seems there were basically two deals under discussion. The  “big” deal was in the neighborhood of $4 trillion and the “small” deal was in the area of $2 trillion. Bascially Boehner and the House GOP weren’t willing to go for the extra $2 billion if a substantial part of it was from increased taxes.

The things that were going to be need for the “bigger’ deal (lower tax rates in exchange for closing “loopholes” and doing something about entitlements) were and are never going to happen with Obama in the White House.

I think raising the debt ceiling with greater offsets in spending is a bankable, though unsatisfying wing. Welcome to divided government.

The question is…are these cuts in the bank? There’s an old saying in DC that “nothing is settled until everything is settled”. Is Obama going to let the GOP walk away from the agreed to spending cuts without giving anything back on revenue?

I doubt it.

I think Boehner’s statement is a pre-emptive strike to make it look like those $2 trillion in cuts are in the bank and make Obama look like he’s the one reneging on a deal.

It’s a clever ploy that would work for a Democrat but the MFM won’t play it that way.

Still, it’ll be a win (again imperfect) for Boehner with the base.

Now we see if Obama will play the 14th Amendment card and just keeping borrowing with no spending cuts.

Jim Pethokoukis’ twitter and blog are must read on this. From his a GOP source of his.

The bipartisan consensus on tax reform (broader base & lower rates) was championed by President’s fiscal commission, and yet now is being rebuked by the President. Lowering top rates that would help make America more competitive was too large a leap for a true class warrior.

Leaders, er, reject the recommendations of their own commissions or something.

Now the posturing begins.

Obama is undoubtedly going to come out swinging accusing the GOP of putting the economic health of “corporate jet owners” over the that of the country. Remember when people wondered if Obama would move to the center like Clinton did after the GOP landslide of ’94? I guess this doubling down on class-warfare is his official answer.

I really can’t wait to see how Obama positions himself as the defender of the public fisc when we’d only be sorta screwed without his spending spree but are totally doomed because of it.

If he can pull that it, he’ll really will have done something unprecedented.

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About Drew

I blog about politics and hockey because I sort of understand those things. I'd blog about women but I'll never understand them.

Posted on July 9, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Thanks for your sharp, but realistic and well-thought-out criticism over on my opinion piece on the big blog today. You may or may not be right about the ramifications of not yielding on the debt limit. Your opinions have merit. I’m sorry I was unable to respond over there in a timely manner– RL concerns drew me away from the idiot box.

    Anyway… you may be right and I may be crazy. But the whole world is insane and I less and less see the point of acting in good faith with respect to Democrats, or democrats. They never do it for us, and never dissemble in such a way as to make the country a better place. Always for the worse. Therefore, any cooperation we give can only lead to a worse position and not a better one.

    As far as losing the full faith and credit… we have enough revenue, month over month, to pay our legitimate entitlements, the active duty military, and the debt service. The government would not collapse. Whether we have the stomach for what would be widespread disruption in government-funded life is a very personal choice, I suppose.

    In my own case, my family gets socialized health insurance and we use food stamps. This is a failure on my part, not hypocrisy. And it is not a permanent situation. But I say so to illustrate that I’m down with more pain now in a very personal sense rather than utter ruin later. On one hand, it’s easy to be an Internet tough guy. It’s just words. On the other hand, I really do see my children in indentured servitude with no hope of escape from it unless we break the back of the beast now, and not later.

    There may not be a later. And it’s getting later and later every day.

    I like you, Drew. I don’t often agree with you, but you are always interested, interesting, well-reasoned and intellectually nimble, traits I admire. Again, thank you for your on-point and well-reasoned critique.

    Best regards,
    Scott Anderson [Truman North]

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