The title of a recently released MSNBC article is “Key senators voice SOME OPTIMISM on Reid-McConnell talks to end debt deadlock” (Web-site/URL: http://presspass.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/10/13/20945762-key-senators-voice-some-optimism-on-reid-mcconnell-talks-to-end-debt-deadlock?lite).
So how much “optimism” is there? “Senate Majority Whip Sen. Dick Durbin said on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday that the conversation which began Saturday (October 12 2013) between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell “HAS THE PROMISE of finding a solution” to the spending and debt impasse that has PARALYZED Washington for more than two weeks”. There are TWO things to note right off the bat. First as the saying goes “promises” are meant to be BROKEN. Secondly/On top of this, “Washington” has been “paralyzed” FAR LONGER THAN “two weeks”.
More specifically, Durbin said: “I’m a HOPEFUL person and I BELIEVE we CAN do it”. Is this REALISTIC?
“Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, said that by Thursday (October 17, 2013), “We will have decided as a Congress that we need to avoid going over the debt limit and WE’LL FIGURE IT OUT (?) and it’ll probably be a relatively SHORT-term solution”. Again, there are TWO things to note here. First, CAN “we…figure it out?” Also “short-term (solutions)” are NO good because again WE CAN’T KEEP KICKING THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD. “I’m HOPEFUL we’ll do that actually in the next couple of days”.
“But Portman said Republicans want to KEEP IN PLACE the spending cuts, known as the sequester, which Congress imposed and President Barack Obama agreed to in 2011 as a way out of a debt limit standoff that year”. “What I understand from last night’s (October 12, 2013) discussion is that Democrats are now saying they want to BUST THOSE (spending) CAPS”. Once again we’re arguing over “spending”.
“On ABC’s “This Week”, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R- S.C., AGREED WITH Portman that the spending limits agreed to in 2011 MUST remain in place IF Republicans WILL GO ALONG WITH ANY DEAL“. That certainly DOESN’T sound like someone who often works across the aisle/political divide to achieve compromise. “If you break the spending caps, you’re NOT going to get ANY Republican votes in the Senate”. “Republican votes in the Senate” are necessary because the Democrats only hold a 53-45 lead in the Senate correct after the 2012 Senate elections (Web-site/URL: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_elections,_2012).
“The South Carolina Republican said he is worried “about a deal coming out of the Senate that a majority of Republicans CAN’T (?) vote for in the House. THAT REALLY DOES COMPROMISE Speaker Boehner’s leadership“. This would be GOOD for DEMOCRATS. “And after all is over, DO WE REALLY WANT TO COMPROMISE John Boehner as leader of the House? I DON’T think so. I’m NOT going to vote for any plan that I don’t think can get a majority of Republicans in the House….” Lindsey Graham is now A PARTISAN LIGHTNING ROD after ACTING LIKE he was working in a bi-partisan manner (with Sen. CHUCK SCHUMER in an attempt to try and get CHINA to make their currency float). We know that the latter was A FREAK SHOW.
“Graham, WHO IS UP FOR RE-ELECTION (2014), also admitted that the spending and debt deadlock had diverted voters’ attention from what most observers agree has been A BADLY BOTCHED DEBUT of the signup for coverage under the Affordable Care Act”. “Graham…IS UP FOR RE-ELECTION (2014)”. This phrase explains Graham’s behavior: remember BLANCHE LINCOLN‘s “I don’t even know what the bill is gonna be” antics in 2010 (Web-site/URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMFIQ7ERdPI). She was trying to SAVE her seat by being negative but she LOST anyway because 2010 was the year of the GOP “shellacking”; Democrats lost 63 House seats that year.
“What breaks my heart is for the last 12 days, you have had A COMPLETE MELTDOWN OF the portal called Obamacare; THE WHOLE SYSTEM IS JUST NOT WORKING. And we’re overshadowing how BADLY Obamacare has been rolled out”. This is a SELLING point for Graham IN HIS RE-ELECTION CAMPAIGN.
Durbin went on: “The House Republicans and their leadership really have stepped to the sidelines. They’re not part of this (bargaining) at this point; they can’t agree AMONG THEMSELVES what they want to have done in this NEGOTIATION (?)” AND THEY’RE TRYING TO TELL OTHERS WHAT TO DO? Also do POLITICIANS “negotiate?”
Finally, “Assessing the impact on the world economy of a default on U.S. Treasury securities, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde said on “Meet the Press that “if there is that degree of DISRUPTION, that LACK OF CERTAINTY, that LACK OF TRUST in the U.S. signature, it would mean MASSIVE DISRUPTION THE WORLD OVER. And we would be at risk of TIPPING, YET AGAIN, INTO RECESSION”. Again, the prospect is BLEAK, especially “that lack of TRUST in the US signature”, which is A DAMNING CRITICISM.
To conclude, WHERE IS THE “optimism” here?