Budget plans, that is. Reid’s and Boehner’s.
Reid’s plan, endorsed by the White House, cuts $2.7 trillion over the next decade—no revenues in sight—and raises the debt ceiling through the end of next year, a key demand from the White House.
Boehner’s two-step cuts $1.2 trillion but only raises the ceiling until the end of this year, meaning we’re back here again in debt-ceiling debate hell in just a few months. In order to earn a more lasting increase in the ceiling, Congress has to agree on another $1.8 trillion in cuts by the end of the year.
One trillion in Reid’s savings comes from ending the wars, which has been criticized as a gimmick, because these savings are expected anyway. But as he correctly points out, House R’s claimed these very savings in the Ryan budget they so warmly embraced a few weeks back.
There could easily be more twists and turns, but at this point, the resolution hinges on these questions:
a) Will the President veto Boehner’s short-term extension in the ceiling, and
b) Could House R’s support Reid?
If the answer to both of these question is ‘no,’ and there’s enough D support for Boehner’s plan, then we get past the Aug 2 default but we’ll be right back in this soup in a few months, an outcome to depressing to imagine.
If these plans end up being more than the flavor of the day, I’ll provide more explanation as to the composition of their cuts.
Finally, note to commenter: yes, I’m working hard on a tee shirt that says “RAZE the Debt Ceiling.” I will devote the proceeds to
deficit reduction job creation.