Yesterday Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned Congress that failing to raise the debt ceiling would have disastrous consequences for the nation. He said, “even a short suspension of payments on principal or interest on the Treasury's debt obligations could cause severe disruptions in financial markets and the payments system…[He went on to say that inaction on raising the debt ceiling] could also "create fundamental doubts about the creditworthiness of the United States, and damage the special role of the dollar and Treasury securities in global markets in the long term."
The unfortunate thing about this debt ceiling crisis is that it did not have to happen but was created by a Republican Party dominated by a few individuals representing a very narrow segment of the population; driven by hatred, misplaced anger, racism, xenophobia, anti-intellectualism; funded by greed; exploited by a few seeking power for personal benefit; unconcerned about the outcome of their actions; incapable of containing themselves; incapable of stopping; in denial of reality; capable only of racing toward disaster for themselves, the nation and perhaps the world.
It is sad that our nation has come to this sorry state of possible voluntary self-destruction.
There may still be a way out but we are down to fabricating a “Smoke and Mirrors” solution. That is apparently what Senators Reid and McConnell are considering.
By now you have probably heard of Senator Mitch McConnell’s plan to solve the debt ceiling crisis. Congress would authorize Obama to raise the debt limit on his own in three installments. Each time he would have to submit his plan to Congress but Obama’s plan to raise the debt limit would be allowed to go into effect unless Congress passed a disapproval resolution that rejected the president’s request. Of course, Obama could veto the disapproval resolution and given the makeup of the House and Senate, Republicans would not be able to get enough votes to override Obama’s veto. Obama gets to raise the debt ceiling all on his own. Republicans get to disapprove with a symbolic gesture. It’s Washington smoke and mirrors.
Think Progress reports that Senate Majority Leader Reid has latched onto the McConnell plan and is working with McConnell on a new version. “Senate leaders Harry Reid (D-NV) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) are reportedly working on a backup debt ceiling plan that would combine aspects of Vice President Biden’s spending-cut plan and the complex procedural plan McConnell unveiled this week. While it’s not yet finalized, the scheme would involve spending cuts without revenue increases, but would raise the debt ceiling beyond the 2012 election and keep safety net programs like Social Security and Medicare fully intact.”
RELATED: SENATOR SCHUMER SAYS ERIC CANTOR IS THE REAL PROBLEM IN GETTING A DEBT DEAL.
Senator Chuck Schumer said President Obama still wants a bigger deal but that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor is blocking compromise.
"There's really only one person who has not made any concessions of all the eight, nine [people] in that room, and that is Majority Leader Cantor. He is basically standing in the way and it's a shame."
Schumer added later, "If Eric Cantor decides everything I fear we'll be in default."
IT GETS CRAZIER: REPUBLICANS NOW SAY OBAMA IS THE ONE HOLDING THE DEBT CEILING HOSTAGE
Sen Mike Lee (R-UT) asked reporters "Why is the President willing to push us into a debt-ceiling induced financial shortfall by virtue of the fact that he's not willing to convince his party to support a balanced budget amendment?" Lee added: “To get a balanced budget amendment in this environment...we'd have to make the serious, credible, earnest threat that if you want to raise it and you want to have any Republicans voting for raising it, you're going to have to assist us: You give us 20 votes to adopt the balanced budget amendment in the Senate and we'll make sure you get the votes you need to raise the debt limit.”
Okay, so according to Lee, Obama is one who is holding the debt ceiling hostage to get his way. All the Republicans are doing is holding the debt ceiling hostage to get their way, which is different from Obama from Obama holding the debt ceiling hostage to get his way because…[I’m sorry, there is just no way to make any sense whatsoever of Lee's statements.]