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After the conclusion of the debt ceiling deal, the conventional wisdom around here was that President Obama is a bad negotiator and that his compromises proved he was weak. The prediction was that this would embolden the Republicans to seize every opportunity to ramp up the strategy in an endless game of hostage-taking.

Fast forward a couple of weeks to this:

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) urged rank-and-file Republicans in a Wednesday memo to avoid brinksmanship in battles over Washington spending.

The message from the majority leader is an effort to prevent the kinds of fights over government spending that could lead to government shutdowns this fall if Congress cannot agree on legislation to fund the government.

It suggests Republican leaders worry they could take a political hit if there is a government shutdown from voters already irritated over the contentious summer talks on raising the debt ceiling.

House leadership is aware that the Democrats and President Obama won the messaging war on the debt ceiling crisis with American voters. And they know better than to push their luck, at least during this election season.

So I guess I'm wondering if any Kossacks who were wrong in their predictions are interested in re-assessing.

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