If Congress refuses to give the United States the ability to pay its bills on time, the consequences for the entire global economy could be catastrophic. Our families and our businesses cannot afford that dangerous game again.President Obama • Warning of possible conflict on the horizon, so soon after the “fiscal cliff” fracas was resolved — you’re not surprised, are you? The debt ceiling fight between the White House and congressional Republicans in 2011 was so acrimonious, and brought the country so close to the brink of default, that Obama is clearly eying this as the next major battle ahead of him. The showdown will likely come in February or March, as the Federal Reserve can employ a bevy of accounting tricks and maneuvers intended hold off hitting the limit until then, but after the political capital expended during last week’s negotiations, we can do little but wait and see how this all ends out. source
So, those Republicans finally got a framework! If anyone feels like you might be on the most boring roller coaster ever, you are, as there have been so many high and low points with this debt ceiling dramarama today that you probably feel so dizzy that people might mistake you for being drunk. Anyway, in the latest developments, Republicans have apparently reached a framework with the White House to make this debt ceiling deal happen. Based on this, which side do you think won the day? Here’s a roundup:
The American people may have voted for divided government, but they didn’t vote for a dysfunctional government. So I’m asking you all to make your voice heard. If you want a balanced approach to reducing the deficit, let your Member of Congress know. If you believe we can solve this problem through compromise, send that message.President Obama • During his debt ceiling speech this evening. Just a hair under 15 minutes, kids. Needed to be said. Kind of obvious. But still …
» So, who’s the loser in all of this? The consumer and taxpayer. The uncertainty on this issue has affected the markets in some ways already (see the price of gold for example), and could endanger your ability to get a loan at a reasonable rate if the talks fail to straighten course. You may see some possible instability this week, as a deal perilously hangs in the balance.
» Obama’s the best in a bad bunch: According to a CBS News poll, while nobody’s doing particularly hot in the current debt crisis negotiations, Obama can at least say that he’s doing better than everyone else. Democrats in Congress have a meager 31 percent approval rating. But let’s face it — this has always been a fight between Republicans and Obama, with congressional Democrats off to the side. So the result is nothing but notable. Let’s raise the question: If the government defaults, is this 1995 all over again for the GOP?
In my view the President has presented us with three choices. Smoke and mirrors, tax hikes, or default. Republicans choose none of the above. I had hoped to do good; but I refuse to do harm.Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell • Speaking before another debt ceiling chat with Obama, while doing what he does best: Clouding the waters. Remember the 1980s, where deals like these could be brokered without dudes like McConnell saying things to scare the base into thinking the Democrats were pure, concentrated evil? John Boehner, who we respect a lot more, had harsh but more moderated words: “This debt limit increase is his problem. I think it’s time for him to lead by putting his plan on the table, something that the Congress can pass.” It’s either Obama being a completely evil human being or Obama not coming up with a deal that can actually pass Congress. Choose your boogeyman, guys. source (via • follow)