It is being reported that House Republicans are considering ignoring the Senate debt ceiling deal, passing their own unpopular debt ceiling legislation, then leaving town.
National Journal Senior Editor Ramesh Ponnuru has been putting together the details of the House plan. Here are the differences between the House and Senate plans, “Changes the Senate plan in several ways that are designed to make it more palatable to Republicans. The executive branch would not be able to shift funds to soften the blow of sequestration, as in the Senate bill; House appropriators want Congress to stay in charge of how the money gets spent. The delay in the reinsurance tax-which Senate Democrats put in their plan to appease unions-would be dropped. The medical device tax would be suspended for two years; that’s not in the Senate deal. The Vitter amendment would be applied to congressmen, the president, the vice president, and the Cabinet but not congressional staff. The Senate deal has nothing Vitterish in it. And the Treasury’s ability to take extraordinary measures to delay hitting the debt limit in the future would be restricted: It would become, as it once was, a firm deadline.”
Ponnuru also added something that he is hearing via Twitter that could blow this whole deal up:
Hearing House may pass its bill and then skip town.
— Ramesh Ponnuru (@RameshPonnuru) October 15, 2013
On MSNBC. Rep. Maxine Watters said that she believes that the bill won’t be acceptable to Senate Democrats. What this means is that all of the optimism that is being heard in the media and the Senate is very premature. The House isn’t going to pass the Senate bill. They are going to prolong this crisis, and possibly cause a default by passing their own bill and then skipping out of town.
Boehner isn’t going to bring the Senate deal to the floor for a clean vote. Republicans are going to ignore the Senate bill, and pass their own doomed to fail in the Senate legislation.
This should be a lesson for Senate Democrats who think that House Republicans are learning anything from the drubbing their party is taking over the government shutdown. Boehner and the House GOP may be planning one last threat to the economy. They are going to ignore the Senate agreement, and keep demanding changes to the ACA. If House Republicans leave town after passing this bill, the country will probably default.
Boehner thinks that by leaving town after they pass something, the House will avoid all blame for a default. In reality, the opposite is true. If the House defaults and runs, the Republicans will compound their political problems by appearing to run out on the country during a crisis.
Senate Democrats have already rejected the things that House Republicans are adding to the bill. If House Republicans follow this strategy, the nation will default, and they will be solely to blame.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association