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Like many other people here, I was, more than anything, just relieved that we were able to re-open the government and avoid economic catastrophe without Obama and the Democrats giving in to the ransom demands. While I hope that this spurs the mostly sane part of the country to elect a Democratic house next year, I want the debt ceiling and shutting down the government to be basically taken off the table entirely for ANY administration, Republican or Democrat. In other words, while the hostages were freed this time, we left the hostage-takers their guns. It's time to take those away.

For the current situation, it SOUNDS like both Boehner and McConnell are on the same page as far as shutting the government down again. It doesn't sound like that will happen. On the other hand, though, 144 Republicans, more than half their conference, voted not just to keep government closed, but to actually DEFAULT. This is not a sane conference, and the problem is, even if Boehner and McConnell are marginally more reasonable, it's only a matter of time before the Tea Party takes over the Republican party.

Maybe this means GOP numbers overall will take a dive, but with their aggressive gerrymander and a somewhat politically apathetic and short-memoried country, it's certainly possible that we'll soon have a House speaker who would have gladly gone over the cliff on Wednesday. I want this option taken away forever. No one should be able to cause the country to default for no reason.

My initial thought is that we should get the debt ceiling declared unconstitutional if possible. The problem, however, is how to setup a "test case" for the law to be reviewed by the Supreme Court, without actually having to go over the cliff and Obama (or another president) having to say that they believe the law to be unconstitutional. If anyone has any ideas on this, I'd be interested to hear them.

As for shutting down the government, it's well known that if Boehner had simply let the House vote on a clean CR from the very beginning that it would've passed, perhaps by as much or more than the final bill actually passed by. The fact that the GOP conference simply made it impossible for the CR to hit the floor by changing the rules is ridiculous. Is there some way that we can make it so "clean" CRs (without riders) to fund the government at current levels are automatically brought to the floor for the whole House to vote on if no budget has passed, so that we don't run into this again? This would still leave the House the power of the purse, as it could still be voted down to shut down government, but it would make it so the WHOLE HOUSE has to vote on it, rather than just letting the Speaker or Majority Leader shut down government because about half of his or her party is against it.

Anyone have any thoughts on these?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Debt Ceiling (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    johnny wurster

    The debt ceiling is the result of legislation passed in the early 1900's.  Prior to that legislation, congress had to approve every bond issue.  To simplify things for congress, they passed legislation authorizing the administration to issue bonds and established a debt ceiling beyond which no bonds could be issued.  To change this all we would need to do is pass legislation eliminating the debt ceiling.  Impossible today, but very possible in the future when all three branches are controlled by Democrats.

  •  The tea party (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kalmoth

    is in trouble. Their latest antics have convinced business Republicans that these extremists are too dangerous to the profit margin. The US C of C is set to fund primary challenges to prominent teabaggers like Justin Amash (R-MI).

    I doubt they'll be taking over anything. If John Boehner had any sort of control over his caucus, they wouldn't be calling the shots now.

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 04:43:08 PM PDT

    •  55% of GOP Have favorable views of Tea Party (0+ / 0-)

      They are the party now. Maybe "moderates" will fight back, but as we all just saw, they're all afraid to. They know that to avoid primaries they need to make sure there is no position to the right of them.

      •  The rank and file (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kalmoth

        GOP voter is irrelevant to this process. The guys with the money determine who gets on the general election ticket. In GOP land, that's business interests. If those interests decide to primary these teabillies, it will not only divide the party and waste money on infighting, it will clear out just enough of them to blunt their influence, which is on the wane, even among Republicans.

        The GOP is the party of big business, first and foremost. The teabaggers are like the evangelicals--they were brought aboard to supply votes.

        "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

        by happy camper on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 05:05:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  WTF (0+ / 0-)

    Why any sane person would actually argue FOR allowing unfettered deficit spending is beyond comprehension to anyone with a brain. You are spending this once great country into oblivion and all you care about is a blanket approval to keep it up. What a bunch of dumb-asses. Do you think the deficit is just some meaningless black hole that will (and has had) no consequences? The dollar is wort 98% of its past value precisely because of this. But because of its slow, insidious pace, you ignore it like it doesn't exsist. One day very soon, it real economic recovery does ever happen, it will once again rear it's ugly head and you will wonder WTF just happened. Well, it didn't.

    •  The debt ceiling has nothing to do with debt (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      leshrac55, Pale Jenova, Eyesbright

      or deficit.

      Appropriation bills (budget bills) are what causes us to need to borrow money.

      If you don't want the govt to need to borrow money, the place to do it is in the budget.  The budget authorizes the govt to buy goods and services.

      All the debt ceiling vote does is allow us to PAY for what we have ALREADY BOUGHT.

      Which is asinine.  If Congress has the courage to pass a bill to buy more stuff than our taxes can pay for, it should not duck the issue of paying it until a later bill.

    •  Ops (0+ / 0-)

      Of course I meant the dollar is worth only 2% of its previous value. Was watching St. Louis kick the Dodgers butt...

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