Thursday, July 28, 2011

Political theater of the day

In a nutshell, Republicans were supposed to vote on Boehner’s plan this evening. Reid basically said, ‘Go ahead and vote on it; we’ll table it immediately, tweak it to a similar version of my bill, then fast-track it right back to you’. However, when it came down to the wire, GOP leadership delayed the vote, because they didn’t have it. Principled conservatives held the line and said, ‘No, we cannot vote for this weak POS!’

By the end of the day, after twisting as many arms as possible, the Speaker and crew were ticked at those tea-party-minded conservatives that had the courage to voice a principled ‘NO!’ So, there’s no vote tonight. 

And what of the Democrats? Well, there are grumblings coming from their Senate members, because they don’t believe the White House is involved enough (i.e., threatening, demagoguing and dictating), even though Obama has no plan, other than to borrow, spend and tax more.

The last rumor of the night is that the Speaker is meeting with members in the morning, and there's talk of 'tweaking' his bill, which is speculated to include a Balanced Budget Amendment (not just the promise of a separate vote before year's end).  This would be the ONLY component that might save Boehner’s ‘ass’; although the bill will still not cut the necessary savings needed to avoid a ratings downgrade, and neither would Reid’s plan (but Fitch isn't too worried about the possibility), nor would it stop the approval of a debt ceiling increase, it would provide a mechanism, if passed by majorities of both houses and ratified by the states (and that's a very big 'IF'), to set future budgets on a fiscal foundation with a much needed constitutional amendment.  But as stated before, this is shear speculation at this point...they could just allow Democrat pressure to water it down more, particularly after sending it to the Senate, and virtually do little of nothing, like the 2011 budget deal back in April (reference here, here, here and here to refresh your memory).

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