"The two parameters are that we cannot default, and a clean debt-ceiling increase cannot pass the House," said Illinois Rep. Pete Roskam, a member of the House GOP leadership.And, happily, Democrats are holding firm:
“We will not negotiate over whether or not the United States of America should pay its bills,” [Senate Budget Committee Chair Patty] Murray writes in the letter, provided in advance to POLITICO. “And once again, before they get any further down this damaging path, we call on our Republican colleagues to not play politics with our economic recovery.” [...]Republicans have backed down before, and last fall's government shutdown was disastrous enough for them that it seems likely they'll once again vote to raise the debt limit in time to avert economic disaster. But this Republican Party is extremist enough that you always have to worry right up to the final vote. As Jed Lewison wrote earlier this week, it's on House Speaker John Boehner to reject pressure from the lunatics in his caucus and settle this thing sooner rather than later.
“As we have repeatedly shown, attempts to avoid compromise by putting the full faith and credit of the United States on the line will not succeed,” Murray writes. “The only way we can get anything done in a divided government is through compromise, not threats or hostage-taking.”