Debt Ceiling Articles

‘The Big Win’?

4:22 PM, Aug 01, 2011

I understand the debt ceiling deal is probably going to pass. I’m not even comfortable unequivocally urging members to vote against it, given all the real loyalties and future relationships and competing responsibilities actual members have to deal with. And I’m not sure I’d urge anyone to vote against it if he were the 51st or 218th vote, because I don’t know that one could adequately manage, either in the real world or the political one, the consequences of “default.”

 Read more

Do They Have the Votes? (Updated)

4:00 PM, Aug 01, 2011

Can the debt deal pass the House of Representatives? House speaker John Boehner has said he believes he has the votes from the Republican caucus, and Steny Hoyer, the Democratic minority whip, says he can deliver 80 to 100 votes from his side of the aisle.

 Read more

Guidance for Anti-Dealers

1:06 PM, Aug 01, 2011

Anyone considering opposing the debt ceiling deal will be accused of being ... not just a hobbit (!), but also a totally irresponsible full-faith-and-credit-of-the-U.S.-government defaulter. Not so—if the anti-deal position is not pro-default.

So, anti-dealers could:

 Read more

Decline Is a Choice

11:34 AM, Aug 01, 2011

Here’s the situation with respect to defense spending, which Speaker Boehner fought for yesterday, with some (very limited) success:

 Read more

Three Questions

10:08 AM, Aug 01, 2011

I’m pretty much where Mitt Romney is on the deal to raise the debt ceiling: On the one hand, it “opens the door to higher taxes and puts defense cuts on the table.” On the other hand, “I appreciate the extraordinarily difficult situation President Obama’s lack of leadership has placed Republican Members of Congress in.” Net: “I personally cannot support this deal”—but, as is implied by the tone and brevity of Romney’s statement, I wouldn’t denounce members of Congress who support it.

 Read more

Five Things We Learned from the Debt Debate

9:49 AM, Aug 01, 2011

We’ve learned a lot from the fight to attach spending cuts to the debt limit increase. Here are five of the lessons:

 Read more

Romney Comes Out Against Budget Deal

9:21 AM, Aug 01, 2011

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has just issued a statement on the debt ceiling deal, saying that he "personally cannot support the deal." Instead, Romney says, his "plan would have produced a budget that was cut, capped and balanced – not one that opens the door to higher taxes and puts defense cuts on the table." Romney's hesitation of supporting a deal with defense cuts puts him in line with John Bolton's criticism of the proposed debt ceiling deal.  

 Read more

Text of the Debt Ceiling Deal

9:06 AM, Aug 01, 2011

The House Rules Committee has posted the entire text of the deal to raise the debt ceiling and cut spending. (PDF is accessible here.) Full text, here:

Text of Budget Control Act Amendment


 Read more

Bolton Speaks

7:49 AM, Aug 01, 2011

John Bolton has just issued a thoughtful statement raising “serious questions ... about the national-security implications of the proposed deal to raise the Federal debt ceiling.” Bolton calls attention to the worrisome short-term defense cuts that the deal makes likely, and to the huge medium- and long-term cuts that the deal’s triggering mechanism makes possible.

 Read more

Fox News Sunday Panel on the Debt Ceiling Debate

7:08 AM, Aug 01, 2011

Bill Kristol and Steve Hayes, with Charles Lane and Juan Williams, yesterday on Fox News: 

 Read more

How Boehner Is Explaining the Deal

9:28 PM, Jul 31, 2011

Speaker of the House John Boehner has put together a PowerPoint presentation (accessible here) to explain the deal reached between congressional leaders and the president to raise the debt ceiling and cut spending. Boehner spoke with Republicans on a conference call, earlier this evening, to share the details of the deal with his caucus. Here are excerpts from that call: 

 Read more

President Obama Announces Debt Deal

8:29 PM, Jul 31, 2011

This evening, at around 8:40 p.m., President Obama announced a debt deal between himself and congressional leaders. Here is the full text of Obama's short remarks: 


 Read more

Will the Debt Ceiling Deal Gut Defense?

4:29 PM, Jul 31, 2011

Members of Congress and their staff who know and care about defense are somewhere between alarmed and panicked at the emerging shape of the debt ceiling deal. (Consider this amazing on-the-record statement by Senator Joe Lieberman’s communications director to Jennifer Rubin just a few minutes ago: “Senator Lieberman is very concerned about rumors that the d

 Read more

More on Ryan and Rubio

10:42 AM, Jul 31, 2011

In response to last night’s Ryan-Rubio/Rubio-Ryan post, a reader sends in an image of this bumper sticker, already available at

 Read more

What the Administration Is Telling the Troops

7:26 AM, Jul 31, 2011

President Obama's defense secretary, Leon Panetta, sent an email message on Friday to all U.S. military personnel and all other employees of the Department of Defense about the debt ceiling.

 Read more

Marco Rubio vs. John Kerry

4:19 PM, Jul 30, 2011

Senator Marco Rubio brings his A-game to the debt limit debate:

 Read more

Paul Ryan: Reid Bill "Guts Defense"

4:09 PM, Jul 29, 2011

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan agrees with conservative national security experts that Harry Reid's debt ceiling bill is much worse than Boehner's bill for our national security.

 Read more

The Battle of the Deficit Bulge

3:50 PM, Jul 29, 2011

As of this writing, the president has pulled off a great political trick, with the help of some kamikaze Republicans.

 Read more

CBO Score Shows Boehner Plan Cuts the Deficit More than Reid's Plan

2:45 PM, Jul 29, 2011

The Hill reports that the Congressional Budget Office has scored the Boehner debt ceiling plan as reducing the deficit more than Harry Reid's plan -- and that's without resorting to gimmickry regarding assumptions about war spending:

 Read more

What Boehner Should Do Now

9:08 AM, Jul 29, 2011

Last night, Speaker Boehner toyed with adding a gimmicky balanced budget amendment provision to the Republican budget bill in order to try to get the final handful of votes he needs for passage. He thought better of this last night, and didn’t do so. He should continue to avoid pointless and embarrassing gimmicks to try to secure a last-gasp victory on the House floor.

 Read more

What Obama’s Rooting For

7:08 AM, Jul 29, 2011

As President Obama watches the debt ceiling developments in the House of Representatives, it’s worth reflecting on what result he is likely rooting for.

 Read more

Boehner Debt Plan Vote Postponed

11:15 PM, Jul 28, 2011

The Washington Post reports:

House Republican leaders delayed until at least Friday a white-knuckle vote on legislation designed to ease the nation’s debt crisis, after hours of scrambling in vain to lock down the last votes needed for passage.

 Read more

Hennessey on the Boehner Plan

1:01 PM, Jul 28, 2011

Economist Keith Hennessey, who has been writing extensively on the debt ceiling negotiations, writes, "I support the Boehner bill and hope House Republicans will vote to pass it." Here's Hennessey's reasoning:

 Read more

More House Conservatives Backing Boehner Bill

12:26 PM, Jul 28, 2011

Indiana congressman Mike Pence, a stalwart conservative and former chairman of the Republican Study Committee, announced today that he will vote for the Boehner bill. Pence is joined by freshman Hoosier Marlin Stutzman, who thanked the Tea Party for pushing the country to cut more.

Here are Stutzman's remarks delivered on the House floor: 


 Read more

Pelosi's Reactionary Liberalism

12:13 PM, Jul 28, 2011

Nancy Pelosi on today's vote: "What we're trying to do is save the world from the Republican budget. We're trying to save life on this planet as we know it today."

 Read more