Monday :: Oct 26, 2015

Boehner, White House Negotiate Debt Ceiling/Budget Deal

by Deacon Blues

Several weeks ago, when it was first announced that John Boehner was cashing in his chips and retiring from Congress, this blog predicted that Boehner would do the dirty work on his way out the door and deal with the debt limit and the budget, sparing his successor from the Freedom Caucus guillotine for tacking these intractable issues. Since that time, Paul Ryan has allowed himself to be anointed St. Paul the Speaker, and the Beltway has wondered how St. Paul would avoid the incoming choice of pissing off his caucus or running the country into the ground.

Well, as we speculated weeks ago, he won’t have to. Boehner, Pelosi, and the White House will take all those issues off the table for the remainder of Obama’s term, and cut a deal in the next several days.

That doesn’t mean the House GOP caucus won’t erupt over the deal, and it doesn’t mean that St. Paul the Speaker won’t have a mess to deal with. It just means that Ryan can now mouth off and kneepad the Freedom Caucus to keep his seat the remainder of this term without having to face the consequences of his rhetoric. And if you think this wasn’t part of Ryan’s agreement to take the job, then you haven’t been paying attention.

But it will still be fun watching the leading GOP presidential candidates bemoan the deal and talk up the virtues of closing down the government and defaulting on our debt. Hillary will be laughing her ass off all the way to next November.

Update, Tuesday: The deal is done, and Obama seemingly learned how to do this part of his job late in his term.

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