John Feehery: Speaking Engagements


Debt Limit Deal

Posted on December 23, 2013

Paul Ryan official portrait

Paul Ryan said that the GOP is going to have to get something for extending the debt limit.

They aren’t going to get anything unless the White House agrees to it.

The President has said that he won’t negotiate, which of course is poppycock.   Of course he will negotiate because he has no choice.

But he won’t repeal Obamacare, for example, in return for an extension of the debt limit.

Nor will he agree to any fundamental entitlement reforms or tax reform.

With Max Baucus out of the picture, it is hard to see how much tax reform will get done this year, although you can make the case that Ron Wyden is a better messenger to progressives and could be a better champion of corporate reform.

In the context of the debt limit, that doesn’t matter much, because there simply isn’t enough time to deliver that holiday package.

The Boehner rule might be a good thing to insist upon.  Cut spending elsewhere in the budget for every year dollar that you increase the debt limit.

The newest examination of wasteful government spending done by Tom Coburn might be a good place to start.  He found 30 billion dollars of waste, and he wasn’t even looking that hard.

Maybe the President could agree to scale back Food Stamp funding.  That might save you 30 billion or so.  But to get the debt limit past the next election, you will need a lot more than that, maybe a trillion more dollars.

Hard to see where you get all of that money.

I have another idea, one that helps both the Republicans and the Democrats.

Delay Obamacare, the whole law, until after the election.

Republicans can claim a political victory if the President agrees to delay the law.   They finally forced Mr. Obama to back down.

Democrats can avoid a political disaster by postponing the law until after the election.

Obamacare is melting down before our very eyes.  So says Joe Manchin, the Democratic Senator.

He ought to be careful.  The last Democratic Senator who commented about the demise of Obamacare so publicly got exiled to China.

The President has issued so many exemptions in such a willy nilly fashion, that it makes your head spin.

And it might lead to the demise of several health insurance companies.

There is an easy solution to this whole mess.  Give everybody a year’s reprieve and do it as part of the debt limit debate.

Everybody wins.  Most importantly, the American people.