Well, it’s been a week since I last posted on this subject (or any subject!). So we must be one week closer to the day the federal government runs out of money. Are we closer to an answer?
So, where does that leave us? The House won’t pass a clean bill; it won’t pass a Grand Bargain; it won’t pass the Gang of Six proposal; and at least 80 House Republicans are prepared to try to kill the Plan B compromise.
It would seem we are not. President Obama has not (yet) taken my advice from a week ago (could it be he does not read my blog?!?!). I stand by it with one addition.
Dear President Obama,
You should announce tomorrow that it is clear that the deadline will not be met and that it is your intention to see to it that all the debt obligations of the United States will be met, interest and principle. Principle will be met by paying off what is immediately due and then borrowing that much again to do the same tomorrow (thereby never exceeding the debt limit but also meaning that the process is going to start sooner than August 2). You then should make it crysal clear what will not be paid. You should do this in a speech, in a press conference, in a press release, and you should send administration officials to the Sunday (and any other) talk shows to explain what will not be paid.
Obviously, you will have to explain again (and again) that this situation exists because the Republican House decided it was what they wanted and that they refuse to negotiate insisting that they get 100% of what they want.
This will cause a lot of consternation, some short term hardship, and some short and long term economic costs. It is absurd that the situation exists at all . There is, however, a dim silver lining comprised of the fun of seeing House Republicans tripping over themselves as they rush to raise the debt ceiling after the start to hear from their constituents.