The Republicans have been exposed. The "most masterful rope-a-dope in history" has the Republicans, and especially Orange Julius, staggering around the ring wondering how they lost this. Now we're seeing Republicans say publicly that they will no longer negotiate, that they will walk out of the room, that they would rather destroy the economy than agree with Obama.
The country is turning on them now. They have nothing. And when they realize that 100% of the blame for a debt ceiling meltdown will be on them, it's over, just like last December. They will be disarmed and dismissed.
Yeah, Obama knows what he's doing. Today he upped the pressure exponentially by telling CBS News that he can't guarantee Social Security checks will go out after August 2.
President Obama on Tuesday said he cannot guarantee that retirees will receive their Social Security checks August 3 if Democrats and Republicans in Washington do not reach an agreement on reducing the deficit in the coming weeks.
"I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven't resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it," Mr. Obama said in an interview with CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley, according to excerpts released by CBS News.
Advantage: Obama. That noise you heard is Sen. Mitch McConnell stabbing Orange Julius in the back and testing out his white flag waving arm.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has proposed creating an escape hatch for Congressional Republicans, who have put themselves in a box by threatening not to raise the national debt limit if Democrats don't agree to trillions of dollars in cuts to popular social programs.
The plan is designed to give President Obama the power to raise the debt limit on his own through the end of his first term, but to force Democrats to take a series of votes on the debt limit in the months leading up to the election. This would stave off the threat of defaulting on national obligations, but keep the charged issues of debt and spending at the center of political debate for months.
And once again Obama is the baddest mofo in the room. Brian Beutler argues that the real target is Grover Norquist's hold on the GOP:
Right now, whether he knows it or not, President Obama has a chisel resting at the most vulnerable point of contact between Grover and the GOP, and, if he's willing to commit, a hammer hovering threateningly above it.
He knows Congress has to raise the debt limit, and he seems to truly believe Obama won't let them do it without offering up new tax revenue -- and that would mean forcing Grover into early obsolescence. Taking that as a given, would he rather see the GOP cave in a way that renders him meaningless, or cave in a way that preserves the power of the "pledge." I totally understand his thinking here.
The second the GOP breaks Grover Norquist's no taxes pledge, he is through. And nobody knows that more than Grover Norquist.
Well, except for one Barack Obama, it seems. Once again, Obama has the GOP right where he wants and needs them.