UPDATE: 9 p.m. EST. The president, the speaker of the house and Harry Reid have all signed off on a deal, it seems to me that the president has one chance to get a bit of political traction out of this, if he is able to draw say 80 democratic votes in the house and 30-35 votes in the Senate then the president can take some credit for a “compromise” however it doesn’t change the fact that the biggest win here belongs to the tea party.
The real trap for the democrats is if the Tea Party supports this bill. If they end up going for it and Democrats oppose it en-mass then it will be much harder for the MSM to attack the tea party on the deal (not that it has ever stopped them in the past).
Do I support the deal? I have no idea, I haven’t read it, I can’t support something when I don’t know what it is. They say there is a balanced budget amendment piece in it but lets not forget this quote from Presidential candidate Buddy Roemer:
Question: Buddy, are you in favor of a Balanced Budget Amendment?
Gov Roemer: No, unless we have a 2/3 requirement to raise taxes. That’s the key. A Balanced Budget Amendment will force the Congress to raise taxes, ’cause they don’t want to cut spending. So you’d better give me a 2/3 vote requirement to raise taxes. You see the difference there? If you have the law that says a balanced budget, then the President won’t have to go to Congress; he’ll raise taxes 1.3 trillion, that’s how much the budget’s unbalanced. You see? The law helps the taxer, so be careful about a balanced budget; you don’t want to be for a Balanced Budget Amendment without a 2/3 vote to raise taxes.
I also know that any deal that offers cuts “over 10 years” is not enforceable.
I don’t know if this will pass with 216 votes 316 votes or 416 votes. It might even fail but until I see this bill I won’t know for sure.
Unlike many of my friends on the right I hit the sack early yesterday after concluding that the entire “debt crisis” business is not an economic crisis story but a political story where the winner (The tea party, honorable mention GOP) and the loser (The White house, honorable mention the progressive left) has already been established.
So even through there were a few amusing moments such as Harry Reid blocking consideration of his own bill as chronicled by Stacy McCain and Michelle Malkin I decided it wasn’t worth losing sleep over.
When I woke up to see there is a possible congressional deal I yawned, nevertheless (Captain) Ed Morrissey raised a point that exactly dovetails with what I’ve been saying:
If Obama endorses this deal, most Democrats will have no choice but to back it; after all, they have been doing the most Chicken Little screeching about the consequences of legislative failure.
This is the political corner that the democrats have painted themselves into, you can’t be crying “crisis” and then not choose to solve it.
The only other option for congressional democrats, if they’ve already decided the president is a loser, is to abandon him en-mass in the hopes the GOP can’t get tea party to pass it. That is however very risky thus highly unlikely.
Either way the left can take solace from the one caveat to their defeat, as Rush Limbuagh loudly pointed out this week. Any and all of the cuts (real or phony) comes after the left set a new higher baseline for spending.
It will make the actual fixing of the problem by the republican congress and president post 2013 that much harder, but the Tea Party republicans and hopefully a non-establishment GOP president will be up to the task.
Update: Stacy at the American Spectator
Jennifer Rubin of The Washington Post briefly describes the contents of the deal:
The agreement would take the country through the 2012 election, but the Boehner bill two-step cutting process would remain. A trillion in cuts up front would be followed by $1.8 more to be determined by a bipartisan commission. . . .
The president gets a deal through 2012; the House gets its cuts; and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) gets his commission.
Every party to this bargain could thus claim partial victory. The key triumph for the GOP? No new taxes, not even on those “millionaires and billionaires” whom Obama has been demonizing in his speeches for the past several weeks.
Claims, shlaimbs, people can claim all they like, we already have a winner and no claim by anyone is going to change it.