Report: House GOP told Obama they’d end shutdown next week if he agreed to their debt-ceiling proposal; Update: Offer to end shutdown made?

posted at 11:21 am on October 11, 2013 by Allahpundit

This makes two separate reports from major media outlets about yesterday’s powwow at the White House that suggest the GOP’s dropping its ObamaCare demands. The NYT claimed that, in return for raising the debt ceiling for six weeks, Republicans “sought the president’s commitment to negotiate a deal for long-term deficit reduction and a tax overhaul.” Deficit reduction, not ObamaCare. Now Politico’s claiming that they actually offered to end the shutdown next week, at least for awhile, if O played ball with them on the debt ceiling. Remember — the whole reason tea-party groups like Heritage Action were okay with a short-term debt-ceiling hike is because, in theory, it cleared the way to re-focus on stopping ObamaCare by digging in on the shutdown. Instead, evidently, Republicans are ready to end the shutdown for a month or more in order to initiate broader negotiations with the White House. Which means that, contra tea partiers’ wishes, discussions over the shutdown and the debt ceiling will end up being “merged” after all. Which in turn means defunding/delaying ObamaCare, if it’s not off the table already, is likely headed for the shelf as the parties focus on deficit reduction instead.

House Republicans told Obama at the White House that they could reopen the federal government by early next week if the president and Senate Democrats agree to their debt-ceiling proposal. After the debt ceiling is lifted, a House GOP aide said they would seek some additional concessions in a government funding bill.

Obama repeatedly pressed House Republicans to open the government, asking them “what’s it going to take to” end the shutdown, those sources said. He questioned why the government should remain closed if both sides agreed to engage in good-faith negotiations on the budget, according to a Democratic source briefed on the meeting…

Obama agreed to review the House Republican proposal for reopening the government, but reiterated that he wouldn’t pay a ransom, the Democratic source said.

The “additional concessions” the GOP’s asking for to re-open government obviously won’t involve any major revisions to ObamaCare. Otherwise, we’re back where we started on all this and there wouldn’t be whispers on both sides about a “breakthrough” or “encouraging” discussions, etc. Maybe Obama would agree to repealing the medical-device tax, which Democrats also dislike, purely to let Boehner save a tiny bit of face. But that’s likely to be the extent of it. In fact, also per Politico, the Senate GOP appears to be preparing its own offer that would raise the debt ceiling and end the shutdown — for a year, not six weeks like the House bill — in return for freezing spending at sequestration levels plus “a repeal of Obamacare’s medical device tax, changes to the Independent Payment Advisory Board and income means testing for Obamacare subsidies.” Again, nothing about delaying or defunding O-Care. The consolation prize for caving is, I guess, the “changes” to IPAB that they’re hoping for, as being able to say that they dented ObamaCare’s “death panels” might theoretically help them with angry tea partiers. But I don’t know — I can imagine that backfiring via the logic that, by merely changing IPAB instead of demanding its repeal, the GOP’s tacitly endorsed it. They’ve become reluctant stewards of the new health-care paradigm, just like the Tories.

Anyhow. If you were hoping against hope for some real action on O-Care, I think Jon Karl’s right. This looks like a cave:

Republicans made it clear Thursday night that they need something in exchange for agreeing to end the shutdown. The president told them that he could, in principle, offer only something that he would normally offer through the course of regular budget negotiations; in other words, nothing on Obamacare, no major spending concessions…

The bottom line: Republicans are working out the terms of their surrender and are attempting to get something for a standoff that has divided the party and cost dearly in the polls. On substance, it is Republicans who are giving in, although the president is now doing something he said he would not do: negotiate while the government is shutdown and there is a threat of default.

I’m watching tweets flow in from this morning’s Values Voter Summit and apparently neither Rand Paul nor Marco Rubio, both of whom backed the “defund” strategy, mentioned ObamaCare or the shutdown fight in their speeches. (In fact, Rubio conspicuously omitted the subject from his Senate floor speech yesterday.) You can dismiss that as a non sequitur if you like — “why mention health care at an event about social policy?” — but if the GOP was winning big from the past two weeks and prepared to fight to the bitter end on defunding, rest assured that every speaker at the summit would be taking a victory lap this morning.

There is, I guess, a chance that Boehner and the House GOP are only shelving O-Care defunding temporarily, to get negotiations going, and that they’ll bring it back once the next fiscal deadline approaches in November. But c’mon: Given the polling and the fact that most of them really don’t want to have this fight, who believes they’ll have the stomachs to do that? Once the government’s open again, it’s open for good. Exit question: Assuming Obama gives Boehner some token concession next week to re-open the government, he’ll almost certainly need Democratic votes to pass this thing, no? NRO reported last night that there are roughly 150 Republicans who’ve signed on to Ryan’s strategy to turn this into a negotiation over deficit reduction, not ObamaCare, so Boehner might be able to pull this off without violating the Hastert Rule. But that still leaves him with a divided caucus, some of whom are likely to be angry that the quixotic “defund” project was abandoned. Where does that leave him and the House GOP going forward?

Update: Just breaking from AP with no details yet: “House GOP offers debt limit hike, end to shutdown in package with spending cuts.” Again, ending the shutdown (as opposed to the debt ceiling) was never part of the conservative strategy on this. The point of raising the debt ceiling for six weeks was so that Republicans wouldn’t feel pressured to end the shutdown. But here we are.


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“House GOP offers debt limit hike, end to shutdown in package with spending cuts.”

rotf

– See, you don’t need — nevermind.

Axe on October 11, 2013 at 2:13 PM

If politics were a stagnant and scientifically predictable thing, thEn Dewey really would have beaten Truman.

Resist We Much on October 11, 2013 at 2:12 PM

FIFM

Resist We Much on October 11, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Doesn’t that suggest Republicans should be concerned about the current generic congress polls?

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 1:49 PM

Yeah, they should be, seeing as the Congressional Mid terms
are in early November, a few weeks from now…….

ToddPA on October 11, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Axe on October 11, 2013 at 1:58 PM

Indeed, the more the public learns the worse it is for them.

I actually read the bill when it was signed, all 2000 plus pages. It’s grown to 10,535 pages. I haven’t read the additional 8000 plus pages of byzantine rules and regulations. I don’t believe anyone has read them.

This is why I think even the Democrats are stunned and alarmed at what is actually coming to life. I think they liked the vague generalities of the leviathan, but seeing it arise as the monstrous creation it has become is another story.

I’ve maintained, even based only on the 2000 plus original pages, that it would collapse under it’s own weight if they tried to implement it. Given the additional 8000 plus pages… I’m certain of it.

Don’t delay, make them adhere to equality under the law without prejudice or preference, and it will collapse.

thatsafactjack on October 11, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Nate

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:19 PM

“House GOP offers debt limit hike, end to shutdown in package with spending cuts.”

rotf

– See, you don’t need — nevermind.

Axe on October 11, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Based on pre-sequester, stimulus-including baseline, I’m sure. And then, probably only in the rate of growth, not in actual nominal dollars.

besser tot als rot on October 11, 2013 at 2:19 PM

Don’t delay, make them adhere to equality under the law without prejudice or preference, and it will collapse.

thatsafactjack on October 11, 2013 at 2:16 PM

After Jan. 2014, when it goes into effect, someone should sue, all the way to the SC. I’d like Roberts on the record on “equality under the law”.

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:20 PM

Nate

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:19 PM

Yeah. It’s not bad. Except for the whole “the GOP is hyper partisan” pap. But, then, what do you expect from a left-wing Democrat?

besser tot als rot on October 11, 2013 at 2:20 PM

RWM, the problem for the GOP is that they have ever less room for error. Their base continually shrinks and so even if they aren’t ousted in 2014, the party is a goner before I turn 40.

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 2:22 PM

But, then, what do you expect from a left-wing Democrat?

besser tot als rot on October 11, 2013 at 2:20 PM


This

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:24 PM

RWM, the problem for the GOP is that they have ever less room for error. Their base continually shrinks and so even if they aren’t ousted in 2014, the party is a goner before I turn 40.

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 2:22 PM

Frankly, my dear, I hope your 40th birthday is tomorrow.

Resist We Much on October 11, 2013 at 2:24 PM

The future…no, it’s the present already.

It’s always indicative of the status of a country.

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Schadenfreude on October 11, 2013 at 2:20 PM

I’m confident that there will be lawsuits and I, too, would like to read Roberts opinion on ‘equality under the law’.

thatsafactjack on October 11, 2013 at 2:26 PM

You’re deluded if you think you haven’t screwed yourselves.

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 1:35 PM

The fact that you’re here screaming and crying and demanding that we quit shows who’s being screwed, and it ain’t us.

Poor black leech libfreeordie is staring down the barrel of losing his welfare check and free ride, and he’s screaming at Obama to save him from the fate of having to work for a living.

northdallasthirty on October 11, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Reading the comments, it is good to see that liefreely has time to repsond, but not back up what she said about Calhoon.

Thank you for conceeding libfreeordie, that you lied and couldn’t back up what you said. It is nice to see you admit so openly that you’re a liar.

The_Livewire on October 11, 2013 at 2:31 PM

McLean Youth Lacrosse fights government shutdown in court AND WINS; Langley Fork Park reopens

Fed up that the federal shutdown was keeping them off their practice fields, a group of young lacrosse players in Northern Virginia challenged the government in court. And at least for now, they won.

Resist We Much on October 11, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Name one issue in the last 5 years when the Republicans said they would fight, and then actually fought.

Obamacare, in both chambers, at every step in the corrupt process.

Notwithstanding immense and sustained abuse from the MSM, K Street lobbyists, punishment and goodies simultaneously dangled by Obama, Reid and Pelosi, not a single GOP senator or representative voted for the monstrosity.

They made one tactical mistake in the House in 2009, but it was hardly fatal to their chances of killing the bill.

matthew8787 on October 11, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Their base continually shrinks and so even if they aren’t ousted in 2014, the party is a goner before I turn 40.

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 2:22 PM

You don’t know much about politics, do you. The base isn’t “shrinking”, it’s getting angry. That’s called political energy. What happens to it or where it goes is unclear. But it isnt “shrinking.”

rrpjr on October 11, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Thanks for illustrating my point.

Another one willing to sacrifice the entire future for just another year or two of impotent ‘power’.

LegendHasIt on October 11, 2013 at 1:16 PM

Yeah, because you are really winning hearts and minds in the court of public opinion, where it counts.

Oh wait, don’t tell me, Nate Silver said that the lame stream media is exaggerating the impact of the shutdown on the GOP, and the polls are lying. Just like in 2012!

Mr. Arkadin on October 11, 2013 at 3:42 PM

Here is another one as our government is about to take off for a three day weekend and paid holiday. The IRS is closed due to shutdown. They will not take payment of my taxes, BUT the interest and penalties continue to be added on even though there is no one to help with my bill. Oh yes they are getting paid anyway even if they are not their to service “We the People”. We march at dawn to put an end to this madness. Show congress that they are of no importance and the White House is an obstacle to democracy . Until we are willing to stand an be measured this will never end well.

jpcpt03 on October 11, 2013 at 3:56 PM

Mr. Arkadin on October 11, 2013 at 3:42 PM

Polls be damned.

Politicians should do the right thing for the survival of the nation, even if you fail and lose your phoney baloney job.

If the polls told you it was OK to rob your neighbor and starve their children, would you do it?

Wait, nevermind; No need to answer. You have already shown your willingness to do that.

LegendHasIt on October 11, 2013 at 4:01 PM

Oh wait, don’t tell me, Nate Silver said that the lame stream media is exaggerating the impact of the shutdown on the GOP, and the polls are lying. Just like in 2012!

Mr. Arkadin

Not just the lame stream media. Surrender monkees like you are exaggerating the impact as well.

Meanwhile, I guess when the GOP gets a chance, they better start pushing for gun control. I hear the polls are against them on that issue too.

xblade on October 11, 2013 at 4:22 PM

I just had our attorney contact our State GOP chair and in no uncertain terms tell him that if we receive one more phone call asking for money he will pursue a harassment lawsuit against him and the GOP.

Mr. Arrogant on October 11, 2013 at 4:43 PM

After this latest cave, Cruz, Paul, Lee and other Constitutional patriots need to band together and have a press conference announcing that they can no longer represent a Party that has left their voters behind, and they are now joining – or starting – a new Party. It was a nice dream…then I woke up.

Decoski on October 11, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Their base continually shrinks and so even if they aren’t ousted in 2014, the party is a goner before I turn 40.

libfreeordie on October 11, 2013 at 2:22 PM

Didn’t a famous leader say something about if you are 40 and still a liberal, you have no brains? Well, then there is still a glimmer of hope for you!

Decoski on October 11, 2013 at 4:49 PM

or was it 20?

Decoski on October 11, 2013 at 4:49 PM

Meanwhile, I guess when the GOP gets a chance, they better start pushing for gun control. I hear the polls are against them on that issue too.

xblade on October 11, 2013 at 4:22 PM

Actually, no, because gun rights are a winning issue for both conservatives and the larger GOP. But no one is talking about gun rights now because conservatives and the GOP are focusing on the losing issue instead.

Mr. Arkadin on October 11, 2013 at 6:20 PM

Anyone see on Breitbart that Ryan’s plan would modify Obamacare and make it better for unions? Also tweak work hour requirments and remove the medical device tax. So not only are we not getting ANYTHING outta this deal, but the idiots are acually working to make obamacare less painful for Americans. Meaning it will not collapse on its own or due to people rising up against it.

Jack_Burton on October 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

Caption under the thumbnail to this post:

Cave?

LOL. But of course. What else?

ddrintn on October 11, 2013 at 9:31 PM

Of course the Republicans will cave, they always cave to the Dems.

The Dems play politics like nuclear war and the Republicans play like a friendly game of hearts!!!!!

jtpcamp on October 11, 2013 at 11:51 PM

With the likes of Bohner and McInsane, who needs the Rep party? Count me out.

stuartm80127 on October 12, 2013 at 1:04 AM

threat of default

That’s exactly what it is: a threat.

Why Default Won’t Happen

But the Democrats are using the threat of default to make Republicans cave.

The fact that Boehner has even talked about the fear of default means that he’s already taken the Democrats’ bait hook, line, and sinker. He’s already admitted his fear of their threat, and now the Republicans are preparing to not only completely lose this negotiation battle but also give back what little they gained (sequestration) in earlier debt limit negotiation battles.

Per Drudge headline:

‘COMPROMISE’ WOULD FUND OBAMACARE, LIFT DEBT CEILING, REOPEN GOVERNMENT AND REVERSE SEQUESTER CUTS…

That sounds like complete surrender to me.

ITguy on October 12, 2013 at 7:25 AM

Put ALL of the negotiations on C-SPAN.

Let the people see that it is Obama making false threats of default.

The Republicans are letting Obama bully them around, and then go on TV and paint the Republicans as the bullies.

ITguy on October 12, 2013 at 7:39 AM

well lets see. The overall damage to the U.S.’s world standing hasn’t reached its maximum yet. This shinnagan is poised to worsen it further, so I dont think a deal will come from BO just yet. Once china is TOTALLY pissed, will we see a deal.

johnnyU on October 13, 2013 at 11:23 AM

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