September 26, 2013

* Ryan Lizza on the House GOP “suicide caucus,” i.e., the radical faction that is exerting outsized control over the national agenda even as its base of support continues to shrink nationally.

* Ed Kilgore is right: Refusing to negotiate with GOP debt limit blackmail — period, full stop, no, no, and no – is the only responsible way forward available to Obama.

* Jason Linkins is also essential reading: Not negotiating on the debt limit is the only way to show real leadership on the issue.

* The chart of the day, courtesy of Steve Benen, perfectly captures what I’ve been arguing: On the debt limit, Republicans are asking for a comical array of concessions in exchange for conceding nothing whatsoever, aside from agreeing not to destroy the economy.

* Great piece by Politico’s Ben White: Wall Street to GOP — are you nuts? And this:

 There is no scenario under which the GOP is going to achieve its main stated  goal, delaying the Affordable Care Act, through a debt limit showdown. The White  House and Senate Democrats would never agree to such a demand. And senior  administration officials say privately that their public refusal to negotiate over the debt limit is not simply a political ploy they will inevitably have to cast aside.

Right. It’s looking more and more like not negotiating is the White House’s only option, and Dems appear united behind this imperative.

* Meanwhile, it’s being reported that House Republicans may not even have the votes to pass their latest debt limit bill, a well stocked conservative goodie bag including an Obamacare delay and Keystone, because it doesn’t cut entitlements enough.

* Brian Beutler explains that House Republicans may be larding the debt ceiling proposal with items specifically designed to force red state Dems to take tough votes, but here’s the rub:

The problem for Boehner is that he starts losing tons of GOP votes when the House’s position isn’t completely outrageous. And once he needs Democratic support he’ll have to accept the reality that most if not all of these requests are non-starters.

Question: Can House Republicans pass anything on their own that could also pass a Dem controlled Senate?

* Related to the above: Roll Call raises an excellent question about the GOP debt limit wish-list proposal:

Some Republicans may be wondering how such a measure would conform to the “Boehner Rule,” which mandates a dollar in “cuts or reforms” for every dollar the debt ceiling is raised. Many aides predict a one-year debt ceiling hike would come out to approximately $1 trillion. And while the wish list has many incentives for Republicans, it might not reach dollar-for-dollar cuts or reforms.

Yes. What happened to the dollar for dollar cuts? That demand no longer operative?

* Republican got very excited today when Joe Manchin reiterated his opposition to the individual mandate, but he isn’t going to vote to shut down the government.

* Digby catches Politico madly hyping the latest very minor Obamacare glitch as proof the law is an epic catastrophe. Just awful. Expect a lot more of this.

* And Alex Seitz-Wald wins the Twitters today with his proposal for how Dems should respond to the GOP conservative wish-list debt ceiling proposal:

Demand:

1) Single payer health care.

2) Carbon tax.

3) Path to citizenship.

4) End sequestration.

5) End Bush tax cuts above $259K.

6) Wall Street tax.

7) Nancy Pelosi made Speaker.

Imagine the outpouring of mockery from the press corps if Dems did something like this. Yet when the GOP offers a set of demands that are similarly ludicrous — comically, epically so, in fact — they treat it as business as usual, and ask Dems why they won’t negotiate.

Greg Sargent writes The Plum Line blog, a reported opinion blog with a liberal slant -- what you might call “opinionated reporting” from the left.