Step One, completed (emphasis in original):
The House approved legislation on Friday by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, to reduce the deficit by $915 billion over 10 years and increase the federal debt ceiling by $900 billion. The bill would allow for an additional $1.5 trillion increase in the debt ceiling early next year contingent on two outcomes: Congress enacting further deficit reductions and a balanced budget amendment sent to the states.
The debt-ceiling plan authored by House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) cuts the deficit by more than the plan by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) if an assumption about war funding is removed from the Reid bill.
Ya gotta give the man credit, he sometimes comes up with great statements:
“Lawmakers should be working a solution to this crisis, not a blocking strategy. Our Democrat friends here in the Senate have offered no solutions to this crisis that could pass either chamber. Not one. Instead, all day long yesterday, we got chest-thumping comments about how they’re going to kill any piece of legislation that comes over here from the House, that it’s dead on arrival.
So says PolitiFact, a website that in the past has gone somewhat harder on conservatives than on lefties:
We find so much wrong with this chart that we don’t think it contains any significant approximation of the truth. It made a major calculation error that dramatically skewed the debt increase away from Obama and toward George W. Bush. It glossed over significant variations in time served in office. It cherry-picked the measurement that was favorable to its cause. And it is contradicted by statistics for GDP-adjusted debt, which show Obama to be the most, rather than the least, debt-creating president of the last five. None of this suggests that Obama can’t turn things around as the economy improves (and Democrats can also take some solace in the fact that Bill Clinton did remarkably well in all of our measurements). But in communicating which administrations contributed the most to growth of the debt, this chart is a failure. We rate it Pants on Fire.
Are folks gonna proclaim Thomas Sowell a RINO or squish now?
Now that the Republicans seem to have gotten the Democrats off their higher taxes kick, the question is whether a minority of the House Republicans will refuse to pass the Boehner legislation that could lead to a deal that will spare the country a major economic disruption and spare the Republicans from losing the 2012 elections by being blamed — rightly or wrongly — for the disruptions.
Add another name to the list, this time long-time economic advisor to senior Republican officials, including Trent Lott, Pete Domenici, and George W. Bush, Keith Hennessey.
First I’ll flag what I like about the substance of the bill.
- As initially drafted it would cut spending by $850 B over the next decade. That’s not chump change. I expect this number will soon go up to $900 B – $1 T. Update: New version is $917 B in spending cuts over 10.
- It has statutory discretionary spending caps and a sequester to enforce them.
- It does not raise taxes.
- It raises the debt limit, as we must do.
It also tees up House and Senate floor votes on the Balanced Budget Amendment, but that is not my priority. A BBA would take years to enact, and we cannot wait that long to fix the underlying math problem.
About a month and a half ago, I asked the question, whatever happened to, “if you like your coverage, you can keep it”? At that time, a study was showing that about 30% of employers were going to stop offering health care coverage because of ObamaCare.
Now comes yet another report that causes me to reiterate that question:
When the Washington press corps starts to turn against a sitting Democrat President, you know he’s in deep you-know-what:
Chip Reid is the first to ask Carney about Obama’s plan: “Why not put it out there?” Reid also asks: “What was the point of giving a prime time address to the nation without an Obama plan?”
Jason Riley of the WSJ seems to think he has:
What very well might happen, however, is a deal between the House and the Senate that does not involve the president. After negotiations between the White House and Republican lawmakers broke down on Friday, Mr. Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid began working directly with one another to end the protracted stalemate. A proposal put forward by Mr. Boehner would lift the debt ceiling in two stages and reduce the deficit by $3 trillion over 10 years. Mr. Reid’s plan would couple a debt-limit hike with $2.7 trillion in spending cuts over a decade. Neither plan calls for tax hikes, which might indicate that Mr. Obama’s fellow Democrats also think that he’s misreading the polls.
If this story is true, Obama just made a huge blunder… not his first, alas, and almost certainly not his last, but possibly one of the worst.
A Republican aide e-mails me: “The Speaker, Sen. Reid and Sen. McConnell all agreed on the general framework of a two-part plan. A short-term increase (with cuts greater than the increase), combined with a committee to find long-term savings before the rest of the increase would be considered. Sen. Reid took the bipartisan plan to the White House and the President said no.”
…at least that’s what The Weekly Standard is reporting, based on a Jamie Dupree tweet.
As Fred Barnes writes, it’s not clear that there are enough Republican votes for John Boehner’s new debt ceiling plan. But the speaker got a big boost on his right flank today from Congressman Allen West (R, Fla.). Jamie Dupree reports that West, an outspoken conservative and Tea Party favorite, is supporting Boehner’s plan.