Here’s the real reason that John Boehner (R-pathetic) is offering a “Grand Bargain.” The carpet is about to be pulled out from under him.
The Huffington Post is running a story right now that there are 17 moderate Republicans (meaning that they don’t burn the kitten’s corpse after they strangle it these days) who are willing to side with House Democrats to send a clean continuing resolution to the Senate.
All 200 Democrats would need to stick together and team up with those Republicans to pass the bill, but House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) would have to be willing to put it to a vote, which so far he has given no indication he will do. But if he does, the votes appear to be there. The Senate would pass the bill in no time, sending it to be signed by President Barack Obama and ending the shutdown.
This “grand bargain” by Boehner is nothing that we haven’t seen before, and there’s nothing grand about it. From Taegan Goddard:
Big caveat: “What’s not being discussed: increased taxes or revenues. From what I hear, this combined deal is being softly and informally sold to members; Wednesday’s talks were abotu (sic) gradually getting them engaged in the prospect. And it’s all about what the GOP could win – there’s little about what they’ll give in return.”
And further from the Wall Street Journal Washington Wire blog:
Republicans fear that their negotiating position is weakening headed into the debt ceiling fight. Now that the new health-care law has kicked in, GOP refusals to fund the government unless Democrats agree to changing the health law seems pointless, said one conservative House Republican. And the GOP strategy on Tuesday to launch a series of narrow spending bills, but bring them up under a procedure in which they could be blocked by Democratic opposition struck some lawmakers as a waste of time.
“All eyes are on Speaker Boehner,” said Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.) “He is the one person who has the ability to reopen the government.’’
On a personal note, my sister, who works for DoD in Germany is furloughed. I will be furloughed on Monday when VA IT runs out of last year’s appropriations money. UPDATE: Or, I’ll be required to work without knowing when or if I’ll be paid if they decide that I’m “essential.” My boss just texted me that they haven’t made that decision yet between me and my office-mate. We may alternate weeks of being essential and being furloughed, which is what I texted him I would prefer so at least neither of us gets completely fucked over. But now is the time for Harry Reid and President Obama to hold firm. We’re winning.