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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

'What Defunding Means'

Paul Krugman:

What Defunding Means: ...Republican leaders are actually saying ... they intend to go full-on blackmail, holding America’s full faith and credit hostage to the sacred goal of crippling Obamacare before it gets going. Assumptions that they will in fact blink are entirely faith-based.
And this article about the plight of the near-old — those close to, but not yet at, the Medicare age — shows what it is the GOP is willing to fight for, indeed to endanger the stability of world financial markets:
THE sweeping federal health care law making its major public debut next month was meant for people like Juanita Stonebraker, 63, from Oakland, Md., who retired from her job in a hospital billing office a year and a half ago.
She was able to continue her health insurance coverage from the hospital for a time, but when she tried to find an individual policy on her own, none of the insurers she contacted would cover her because she was diabetic.
Yes: Republicans are willing to push the economy and the financial system to the edge of disaster in order to deny people like Ms. Stonebraker coverage. Awesome, isn’t it?

Here's more:

House Speaker John Boehner's complicated scheme to pass a budget that defunds Obamacare without really defunding Obamacare has hit a major snag: the far right isn't buying it. They want the real confrontation: defund Obamcare or shut down government. Boehner had hoped to vote on the measure Thursday, but has been forced to postpone the vote by the opposition in his own party. Once again, he just doesn't have the votes for it. ...

[T]he Club for Growth, Heritage Action and other groups [are all] lining up in vocal opposition to Boehner's plan. None are buying Majority Leader Eric Cantor's consolation prize—demanding an Obamacare delay in exchange for lifting the debt ceiling.

Boehner doesn't want a government shutdown on his head, no more than he wants responsibility for the inevitable financial crisis resulting from not raising the debt ceiling. If he can't rein in the teabaggers in his caucus, he's going to have to abandon them, and come up with a budget that he can get Democratic support for. That's just about the only option left to him, unless he decides to follow in Newt Gingrich's footsteps.

Back to Krugman:

As some of us have been saying, financial markets are way too complacent about the debt ceiling...

    Posted by on Wednesday, September 11, 2013 at 12:11 PM Permalink  Comments (66)


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