“A seasoned House Republican lawmaker, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told The Hill that the vote on Boehner’s proposal is a ‘vote of confidence in the Speaker.’

“‘This is the first time that we’re almost in a parliamentary position in that the president is sort of out of it, and this is now a situation where it’s a vote of confidence in the Speaker and so, if we don’t get it through, John is out of the picture,’ the source said.”

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“Representative Renee Ellmers of North Carolina said she came to Washington suspicious of Mr. Boehner. At Tea Party rallies before she was elected, she heard that he was part of the problem.

“‘When I got here I realized that wasn’t the case at all,’ she said. ‘I was told he wasn’t conservative. He is conservative, and that’s what I tell other people in our discussions. He has been great to all the freshmen.'”

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“The ‘just say no’ strategy is predicated on the assumption that, if no agreement is reached, the policy and political consequences of passing the President’s August 2nd deadline will place greater relative pressure on Democrats than on Republicans, and that this pressure difference will be so great that it causes the President and Senate Democrats to accede to policies they had previously rejected.

“I think this assumption is flawed for several reasons…

“A few vocal conservative Members have argued for months that default isn’t so bad, that they are willing to risk a cash crunch in early August, and that they don’t believe Secretary Geithner’s August 2nd deadline. This has been quite effective. It shifted the leverage and ensuing negotiations enough so that this week only the President is talking about tax increases and he sounds odd doing so. Markets and Washington alike are afraid that conservatives might actually tempt fate and prevent a debt limit increase, and that fear has created leverage to produce the current legislative situation.

“The downside of this tactic is that if the deadline passes without legislation, you can’t turn around and blame the other guy for whatever damage occurs in August. For months the President has been saying ‘August 2nd is a deadline,’ while a vocal faction of Republicans has been saying ‘No, it isn’t.’ If conservatives vote no, Congress does not act, and bad things happen after August 2nd, those Republicans will get the blame because they assigned it to themselves over the prior few months.”

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“The left has accused the Tea Party of wanting America to default on its debt obligations. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Tea Party wants America to stop incurring debt obligations and to cut back on the wasteful spending already in place.

“We in the Tea Party understand a basic concept that Washington has forgotten: When you are in a hole, quit digging. Every time we have approached the debt ceiling, we have been told the same thing: If we do not raise the debt limit, it will be the end of the world as we know it. A couple of years later, when we find ourselves facing the same crisis, we’re told the same thing…

“We can see Greece’s economy in its death spiral. That is our future if we do not stop out-of-control government spending and the borrowing to cover it.”

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“The ‘act like grown-ups’ invocation seems to come mostly from liberals. For instance, it was mostly lefties who tried to push a Twitter theme, ‘F***YouWashington’ (without the asterisks).

“Draped in nonpartisan pragmatism, this talk amounts to, shut up and give Obama what he wants. There’s nothing wrong with supporting Obama, but pretending that other viewpoints are illegitimate — or that robust debate counts as dithering — smells undemocratic.

“Our politicians are arguing, in part, because they disagree — not simply about how to cut our debt, but whether our debt is even a problem. And while the gravity of a government shutdown or possible default makes this debate scary, it’s better to debate debt, austerity and taxes before a crisis hits than after.”

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