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January 01, 2013 4:59 PM Into Overtime

By Ed Kilgore

The House Republican Caucus is scheduled to meet at 5:15 EST—their second meeting of New Year’s Day—to figure out what to do with the Senate-passed tax package. Of the three options available to them—pass the Senate bill, reject it, or send it back to the Senate with perilous amendments—the first option seems least likely at the moment, after House Majority Leader Eric Cantor came out against the deal earlier today. The third option, unless House GOPers just engage in some symbolic spending-cut measures that don’t particularly offend Democrats, is very likely to blow things up.

This Congress is scheduled to end on Thursday at Noon, so it’s beginning to look increasingly possible that the whole negotiation process will have to begin again with a slightly different configuration of players.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

Comments

  • Ckelly on January 01, 2013 5:25 PM:

    Go ahead and blow up the deal GOP. I hate it anyway

  • sjw on January 01, 2013 5:32 PM:

    Yesterday evening I was sort of bummed. But this news is too good to be true. If the House blows this up, Obama and the Democrats come out looking better than ever. More importantly, they can work out a better deal post cliff dive. Onward dysfunctional Republicans!

  • ocularity on January 01, 2013 5:46 PM:

    I assume the Tea organisms will simply never allow a vote on any bill the President has agreed to sign.

  • bushworstpresidentever on January 01, 2013 5:46 PM:

    Lets hope they blow it up.

  • T-Rex on January 01, 2013 5:53 PM:

    If the House GOP does snatch defeat from the jaws of victory yet again, I hope people, especially cranky leftists, will remember that a lot of us, myself included, predicted it. I don't think Obama plays five-dimensional chess, but I do think he can keep a step or two ahead of idiots. That means he can make concessions that he knows he'll never actually have to deliver, because the other side will reject a reasonable offer, leaving him with the credit for bargaining in good faith and themselves with all of the blame for not doing so.

    And the only thing I hate worse than the House GOP members is Craptcah.

  • c u n d gulag on January 01, 2013 5:59 PM:

    With this deal, this may be the only time I actually ever recommend that people committ a murder-suicide - emphasis on the latter.

  • Josef K on January 01, 2013 6:34 PM:

    I half-expected this is how things would shake out. Not because I think the President outmaneuvered the Republicans (at least not entirely), but because there was no indication Speaker Boehner had been included in the negotiations last night; there seemed to be an assumption the House would play fiat acompli.

    Not exactly how you expect a co-equal chamber of Congress to be treated (especially one currently under the control of a collection of Civil War re-enactors), and not a good way to expect actual legislation to go forward.

    But now I'm hearing Speaker Boehner is going with a two-prong strategy: vote for an amended bill, then do a straight up-or-down vote for the Senate bill.

    Looks like we may have this disaster go ahead anyway.

  • Cranky Observer on January 01, 2013 7:39 PM:

    = = = I half-expected this is how things would shake out. Not because I think the President outmaneuvered the Republicans (at least not entirely), but because there was no indication Speaker Boehner had been included in the negotiations last night; there seemed to be an assumption the House would play fiat acompli.

    Not exactly how you expect a co-equal chamber of Congress to be treated (especially one currently under the control of a collection of Civil War re-enactors), and not a good way to expect actual legislation to go forward. = = =

    That might - just might - be because after Mr. Boehner's "Plan B" failed he asked the Senate leaders to take the lead in finding a compromise. If you punt, you don't have control of the ball anymore.

    Cranky

    teadsni not - 3rd try

  • low-tech cyclist on January 02, 2013 9:03 AM:

    One thing that bothered me in the midst of all this is that while these negotiations were going on, it was virtually impossible to contact one's elected representatives to register an opinion. Congress was officially closed for New Year's, even though the Senate had passed a bill in the wee small hours, and the House was busily trying to decide what to do with it. Congresscritters' voicemail boxes were full up, and nobody was there to listen to your voicemails anyway.

    And this was happening in the last hours of a lame-duck Congress that wasn't accountable to the voters anyway. It was the acme of unaccountability.