Quotes of the day

posted at 10:41 pm on October 7, 2013 by Allahpundit

China and Japan ratcheted up pressure on the US to avoid an unprecedented US default on its debt as Democrats and Republicans continued their stand-off over the budget in the second week of a US government shutdown…

In its first official reaction to the US political stalemate over the budget and looming debt ceiling deadline later this month, Beijing said “the clock is ticking” and urged politicians in Washington to “ensure the safety of the Chinese investments”.

Zhu Guangyao, vice-finance minister, told a media briefing that China has made clear its unease over the political impasse in Washington. In Japan, the Ministry of Finance is very worried about the potential impact on currency markets, according to a senior official. A US default could cause investors to dump the US dollar, which would sharply push up the value of the yen.

***

Speaker John Boehner may be trying to finalize a plan to raise the debt limit, but House conservatives are already skeptical of his efforts. In interviews, several of them tell me they’re unlikely to support any deal that may emerge.

“They may try to throw the kitchen sink at the debt limit, but I don’t think our conference will be amenable for settling for a collection of things after we’ve fought so hard,” says Representative Scott Garrett (R., N.J.). “If it doesn’t have a full delay or defund of Obamacare, I know I and many others will not be able to support whatever the leadership proposes. If it’s just a repeal of the medical-device tax, or chained CPI, that won’t be enough.”

Representative Paul Broun (R., Ga.) agrees, and says Boehner risks an internal rebellion if he decides to broker a compromise. “America is going to be destroyed by Obamacare, so whatever deal is put together must at least reschedule the implementation of Obamacare,” he says.

***

Not only do some conservatives say Oct. 17 is an artificial deadline—”Nobody thinks we’re going to default on Oct. 17th,” said Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan.—but they also are attempting to narrowly define what would constitute default.

In interviews with more than a dozen GOP lawmakers, the Republicans rejected the notion that Washington could default on its debt unless a borrowing increase is approved before Oct. 17. For the United States to actually default, these Republicans argue, the Treasury Department would have to stop paying interest on its debts—something GOP lawmakers claim is inconceivable…

“We’re not going to default; there is no default,” said Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C. “There’s an [Office of Management and Budget] directive from the 1980s, the last time we got fairly close to not raising the debt ceiling, that clearly lays out the process by which the Treasury secretary prioritizes interest payments. Tim Geithner understood that, because the last weekend in July of 2011 he was in New York City telling the primary dealers that we were not going to default on our debt.”

Mulvaney even went so far as to say Obama and White House officials have been dishonest when warning of default: “If the president wants to lie to the public, I can’t stop him.”

***

Remember, the last time you and I wanted the GOP to fight on the debt ceiling, the attacks from our own side were particularly vicious…

It is what Republican leaders want. They are hoping for us to be recalcitrant and angry over the debt ceiling increase. They want to appear to shove us off by raising it. They know they can’t fight us on Obamacare because the public hates Obamacare. But they know they can on the debt ceiling because of the specter of default.

So what should we do? I think somebody like Steve Scalise, who chairs the Republican Study Committee, needs to propose a short-term debt limit for a few weeks and attach to it the Full Faith and Credit Act that ensures the Treasury Department prioritizes interest payments in the event the debt limit is ever not increased. This would buy us some time to finish the fight to defund Obamacare and set us up well to fight the next long-term debt limit increase to the death by removing some of the President’s scare tactics. How do Republican Leaders not adopt and push such a proposal? How does Obama not accept it without looking completely unreasonable?

***

***

David Walker, the former Comptroller General under President Bill Clinton, who also served under President George W. Bush, says emphatically that the United States should not violate the debt ceiling limit, but he agrees with Republicans that the United States could and should prioritize making interest payments and bond redemptions ahead of other obligations. But, Walker says, the Treasury Department is either unable or unwilling to do that.

“In theory you could prioritize your payments. And in theory, if your accounting system were adequate, you could use whatever cash you have to be able to pay interest on the debt as a top priority,” Walker says. “The problem is that the federal government’s accounting systems are so bad that they don’t have enough transparency to be able to differentiate the payments.”

***

President Obama’s top economic adviser today suggested that negotiating with Republicans over an increase to the nation’s debt limit could be more harmful to the U.S. economy than default itself.

“If you sanction through negotiation the legitimacy of somebody threatening default, then that is going to happen over and over again,” National Economic Council director Gene Sperling told ABC’s Jonathan Karl at a Politico Playbook breakfast this morning.

“So sanctioning negotiations with someone threatening default is not going to end the risk of default; it’s likely to increase the chances that we as a country eventually default. The only way for us to go forward is to all make clear the era of threatening default is over,” he added.

***

Opinion about raising the debt limit was more evenly divided in July 2011, a few weeks before the last major showdown over the issue. At that time, 40% viewed a debt limit increase as absolutely essential in order to avoid a crisis, while nearly as many (39%) said it would not pose major problems.

Partisan differences over raising the debt limit are similar to two years ago: 62% of Democrats think it is absolutely essential to increase the debt limit, compared with 45% of independents and 36% of Republicans. Republicans and GOP leaners who do not agree with the Tea Party (40%) are much more likely than Tea Party Republicans (23%) to view a debt limit hike as absolutely essential.

pe

***

Senate Democrats are planning to start the process this week for a Senate vote on a clean debt limit increase, sources tell me – a move that could call the bluff of Republicans in both chambers and force them to take a stand on whether they will allow default and economic destruction if Dems don’t accept their unilateral demands.

The move has the backing of the White House, according to a source familiar with discussions…

If the Senate can pass a clean debt limit increase and send it to the lower chamber, then House Republicans would then presumably refuse to allow a vote on it. With Boehner now claiming a clean debt limit (or a clean CR) cannot pass the House, this would enable Dems to argue Boehner won’t even allow the will of the House to be tested on the debt limit, either, despite the threat of default.

This also raises another question: If Senate Republicans filibuster a debt ceiling hike, will Senate Dem leaders change the rules to allow it to pass by a simple majority, on the argument that so doing is imperative to save the U.S. economy from meltdown? Remember, the deal that averted the “nuclear option” this year left the current rules in place, but Dems reserved the right to act again if GOP obstructionism continued.

***

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Monday that lifting the debt ceiling will be non-negotiable for as long as Barack Obama is president

“It will always be, as long as he’s president, President Obama’s position that that responsibility is not negotiable. That there’s not a game of trading for political priorities or agenda items that Republicans have not been able to achieve through legislation or the ballot box.”

***

Representative Greg Walden of Oregon, the House GOP’s campaign chief, says whatever the leadership ultimately decides, it won’t be a clean CR or a clean extension of the debt limit. “I don’t think you could pass a clean CR or a clean debt ceiling,” he says. “But we need to sit down and talk with the Senate and the president and work through all of these issues.”

Sources close to Boehner echo Walden. In private, Boehner has told his allies that he won’t bring up a clean CR, and he’s hopeful that as the deadline nears, President Obama will deal. “There’s no way the president holds firm,” a House GOP insider predicts. “Once that crack opens, I don’t know how the debt limit will be addressed, but it won’t be by Republican capitulation.”

“Pretty much the same story,” cracks Representative Peter King of New York, when asked for an update. “Everything’s the same story.”

***

***

***

Click the image to watch.

dp


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4

Anti-Control on October 8, 2013 at 7:37 AM

but but obamacare is the law of the land, it was passed in the congress, signed by the president and upheld by SCOTUS…that’s all these lemmings can say…

its annoying…so I agree, gop should just keep going with their messaging

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 7:40 AM

With all that is going on in the world, who could possibly care about Sharpton’s racism and fraud from decades ago?

***

Happy Nomad on October 8, 2013 at 7:34 AM

MSNBC’s Moaning Joe, in allowing Sharpton to use that show to plug some book he’s just churned out.

BuckeyeSam on October 8, 2013 at 7:41 AM

Senate Dems to try passing debt ceiling increase
By ANDREW TAYLOR
— Oct. 8 3:13 AM EDT
*********************

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats controlling the Senate are planning to try to pass a stand-alone measure to increase the government’s borrowing cap, challenging Republicans to a filibuster showdown that could unnerve financial markets as the deadline to a first-ever default on U.S. obligations draws closer.

A spokesman said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid could unveil the measure as early as Tuesday, setting the table for a test vote later in the week. The measure is expected to provide enough borrowing room to last beyond next year’s election, which means it likely will permit $1 trillion or more in new borrowing above the current $16.7 trillion debt ceiling that the administration says will be hit on Oct. 17.

The development came as a partial shutdown of the government enters its second week with no end in sight.

It’s not clear whether Reid’s gambit will work. Republicans are expected to oppose the measure if it doesn’t contain budget cuts to make a dent in deficits. The question is whether Republicans will filibuster the measure.

Until recently, debt limit increases have not been the target of filibusters; the first in memory came four years ago, when Democrats controlled the Senate with a filibuster-proof 60 votes.

Many Republicans in the Senate, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Whip John Cornyn of Texas, have voted for so-called clean debt limit increases during Republican administrations.

Some Republicans seemed wary of participating in a filibuster that could rattle the stock and bond markets.

“We shouldn’t be dismissing anything out of hand, whether it’s the debt ceiling or what we’re going to do with this government shutdown,” Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said. “We’ve got a situation where you’ve got a calendar running, you’ve got people who are frustrated and upset, so let’s figure it out.”

The impasse over the shutdown — sparked by House Republicans’ insistence that a temporary funding bill contain concessions on President Barack Obama’s health care law — shows no signs of breaking, as each side sticks to its guns and repeats its talking points.

Democrats from Obama on down to the most junior lawmakers said again that the House should vote immediately on ending the partial closure of the government. Obama said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, “doesn’t apparently want to see the … shutdown end at the moment, unless he’s able to extract concessions that don’t have anything to do with the budget.”

Boehner, in rebuttal, called on Obama to agree to negotiations on changes in “Obamacare” and steps to curb deficits, the principal GOP demands for ending the shutdown that began with the Oct. 1 beginning of the new fiscal year, and eliminating the threat of default. “Really, Mr. President. It’s time to have that conversation before our economy is put further at risk,” Boehner said on the House floor.

The White House has said repeatedly the president will not negotiate with Republicans until the government is fully reopened and the debt limit has been raised. But it hasn’t said the debt limit measure has to be completely “clean” of add-ons.

White House aide Jason Furman told reporters the White House could accept some add-ons if Boehner “needs to have some talking point for his caucus that’s consistent with us not negotiating … that’s not adding a bunch of extraneous conditions.” Another White House official, Gene Sperling, said the administration could be open to an interim, short-term debt limit extension to prevent a catastrophic default.

Republicans were sticking with a strategy of trying to pin the blame for the shutdown on Obama for being unwilling to negotiate. The House also passed legislation Monday to reopen the Food and Drug Administration, the latest in a series of piecemeal funding bills to advance through the GOP-controlled chamber.

It’s been commonly assumed that Republicans would suffer politically from the shutdown and the early polling data seems to bear that out.

A survey released Monday by The Washington Post and ABC News said disapproval of Republican handling of the budget showdown was measured at 70 percent, up from 63 percent a week earlier. Disapproval of Obama’s role was statistically unchanged at 51 percent.

Meanwhile some 350,000 civilian Defense Department workers were summoned back to work Monday as the result of legislation Congress passed and Obama signed after the shutdown began. Other agencies, like NASA and the Environmental Protection Agency, remain mostly shuttered.
============

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/senate-dems-try-passing-debt-ceiling-increase

canopfor on October 8, 2013 at 7:43 AM

OT: I had Moaning Joe muted, but I noticed (too late to un-mute) that NEA is running an add plugging that vile Common Core.

When are people going to wake up?

BuckeyeSam on October 8, 2013 at 7:43 AM

but but obamacare is the law of the land, it was passed in the congress, signed by the president and upheld by SCOTUS…that’s all these lemmings can say…

its annoying…so I agree, gop should just keep going with their messaging

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 7:40 AM

Just point them to Scott v. Sanford. That too dealt with the law of the land and upheld by the SCOTUS.

Happy Nomad on October 8, 2013 at 7:45 AM

BuckeyeSam on October 8, 2013 at 7:43 AM

Yeah. I hear a lot of people chattering about how we can catch up with the rest of the world. Here’s a thought. Why not ask how we can catch up to where we used to be! Why not undo all the wonderful, progressive education “advances” we’ve made and go back to what we used to do: Reading, Riting and Rithmatic.

MJBrutus on October 8, 2013 at 7:46 AM

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 7:26 AM

They have apparently arrested some vets at the memorial. Another poster supplied a link to a photograph of the event.

dogsoldier on October 8, 2013 at 7:47 AM

but but obamacare is the law of the land, it was passed in the congress, signed by the president and upheld by SCOTUS…that’s all these lemmings can say…

its annoying…so I agree, gop should just keep going with their messaging

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 7:40 AM

I don’t believe it’d be a difficult task to use 0dumba’s ACA waivers against him, especially if the GOP keeps loudly harping on how Reid and Choom won’t act upon what both sides aren’t fighting over…

Anti-Control on October 8, 2013 at 7:47 AM

dogsoldier on October 8, 2013 at 7:47 AM

I wonder what the price tag is for policing the open air and normally unstaffed memorial and arresting those people.

MJBrutus on October 8, 2013 at 7:49 AM

“The greatest guilt of today is that of people who accept collectivism by moral
default; the people who seek protection from the necessity of taking a stand,
by refusing to admit to themselves the nature of that which they are
accepting; the people who support plans specifically designed to achieve
serfdom, but hide behind the empty assertion that they are lovers of
freedom, with no concrete meaning attached to the word; the people who believe that
the content of ideas need not be examined, that principles need not be defined, and
that facts can be eliminated by keeping one’s eyes shut. They expect, when they find
themselves in a world of bloody ruins and concentration camps, to escape moral
responsibility by wailing: “But I didn’t mean this!”
― Ayn Rand

Murphy9 on October 8, 2013 at 7:52 AM

I wonder what the price tag is for policing the open air and normally unstaffed memorial and arresting those people.

MJBrutus on October 8, 2013 at 7:49 AM

IMO, there should be a push for firing senior officials at the National Park Service. At a very minimum they have been bad stewards in an organization that prides itself on stewardship. They have denied taxpayers access to stuff that they have paid for. They have endangered those with disabilities by blocking the wheelchair ramps on the curbs to “close” the National Mall. They have engaged in arbitrary partisan politics by refusing to accomodate honor flights yet allowing a union-sponsored rally for illegal aliens. They tried to close the ocean.

Again, the NPS officials need to be fired. Hopefully as part of any deal for funding the NPS in the future.

Happy Nomad on October 8, 2013 at 7:58 AM

Thanks HN and AC
Lsm have their hands over their ears…..I can’t hear you… I have my talking points to belt out

Crickets chirping dogsoldier…. shameful

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 8:00 AM

Ugh. ExxonMobil is plugging Common Core.

BuckeyeSam on October 8, 2013 at 8:00 AM

Buckeye
They gotta prop up their buddy because wolfie won’t bring him on

He’ll have a spot on the today show and thats about it

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 8:02 AM

- Thomas Sowell
My take: “Liberalism: The Political Ideology of Stupid Choices”

kingsjester on October 8, 2013 at 6:39 AM

…the veteran thing…illegals demonstrating on the mall has caused frothing… around my mouth!

KOOLAID2 on October 8, 2013 at 8:06 AM

MJBrutus on October 8, 2013 at 7:49 AM

That tab will be higher than they think it is. Right now Zero and his stooges are probably having a great laugh. Rational people are not smiling.

dogsoldier on October 8, 2013 at 8:16 AM

Crickets chirping dogsoldier…. shameful

cmsinaz on October 8, 2013 at 8:00 AM

It is shameful. Our alleged journalists are our enemies.

I just realized that if all Zero has is mean and spite, he’s admitting defeat. He’s a failure. Wow what a leader! He can’t get his own way, so he’s arresting and locking up some old guys that hobble over or wheel their way up to a wall.

Wow, he’s another Alexander or something. LOL!

dogsoldier on October 8, 2013 at 8:24 AM

Via some poster @ Twitchy …

http://a.disquscdn.com/uploads/mediaembed/images/646/1420/original.jpg

pambi on October 8, 2013 at 8:37 AM

I just realized that if all Zero has is mean and spite, he’s admitting defeat. He’s a failure. Wow what a leader! He can’t get his own way, so he’s arresting and locking up some old guys that hobble over or wheel their way up to a wall.

Wow, he’s another Alexander or something. LOL!

dogsoldier on October 8, 2013 at 8:24 AM

that’s right…it’s all he’s got left…and if we “default” which i know we really can’t, but if he calls it that because we won’t raise the debt limit without spending cuts, it’s on him and he knows it and it’ll have happened on his watch. he’s a chicken who’s playing a chicken-sh*t game…

gracie on October 8, 2013 at 9:11 AM

So, govt accounting is so complicated Lew can’t figure out how to write check to the Chinese to pay the interest on our debt but we’re supposed to buy health insurance from these same people. Got it. No wonder doctors don’t want to deal with MC or the ACA.

Kissmygrits on October 8, 2013 at 10:14 AM

O/T. The folks who were kicked out of their houses at Lake Mead are just a small minority of the thousands of people who lease land or cabins on federal land country wide. Why did they just pick on those few? Seems like a drone strike of a closure for a publicity stunt. See what the govt can do to you if they want to.

Kissmygrits on October 8, 2013 at 10:19 AM

…the veteran thing…illegals demonstrating on the mall has caused frothing… around my mouth!

KOOLAID2 on October 8, 2013 at 8:06 AM

Well, Mr. Kool, this will not make it any better. My blood pressure is rising!!

HA filter wouldn’t accept the link to the outrage, so you’ll have to go to Drudge and look for “Police Arrest Veterans at NYC Memorial…” in middle column.

A betrayal is a mild word for what they did!!

bluefox on October 8, 2013 at 10:51 AM

I thought the lame DoD excuse for not providing support at Benghazi is that the nearest troops were in Italy- too far away to make a difference during the eight-hour attack. Have we cracked the time/distance equation or was this just another lie told by Leon Panetta?

Happy Nomad on October 8, 2013 at 7:32 AM

“Shut! Up! You!” he explained.

Solaratov on October 8, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4