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Thursday, August 04, 2011

The US government shutdown which won't happen now 

With all the criticism of that terrible, horrible, no good, very bad Obama debt limit deal, there is one aspect that the critics seem to be missing.
The deal that Obama signed included a "deem and pass" for the 2012 federal budget.
So let's speculate -- if the debt limit had been raised in December, or if Obama had implemented the 14th Amendment option, then what would have happened in September?
Instead of taking the debt limit hostage, the Tea Party Republicans would have taken the federal budget hostage. They would have refused to pass anything and the federal government would have had to shut down.
At least with the debt limit issue, their Wall Street supporters and the conservative pundits were screaming at these guys to get off their butts. Even with that pressure, look how juiced they were to indulge in soap-opera brinksmanship and look how difficult it was to convince them to take yes for an answer and raise the limit.
If this bunch had had the opportunity to grandstand on refusing to approve a federal budget, they would have jumped at the chance. They would have thrown tens of thousands of federal civil servants out of work without a minute of hesitation. And I'm not sure how that would have ended.

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