My conversation with GOP Senate Senator Mitch McConnell on air Thursday made it obvious that he cannot plan or execute a Senate GOP strategy on the debt limit until the House GOP passes some sort of a debt limit bill and sends it over to the Senate, and even then no one can ever underestimate Harry Reid's twists and turns after it arrives. Damien Paletta has the latest details in the Friday Wall Street Journal, and it is clear that the House GOP leadership is floundering. Again.
The GOP again played into the MSM narrative by not putting something on the floor this past week and trying to get it passed with or without Democratic votes. They have to return next week and actually act, not whisper to each other and the occasional favored reporter. If the first GOP package fails, they try again. But rather than starting with paralysis followed by retreat, start with common sense.
The GOP isn't going to trigger a default, not with the 2014 focus squarely on Obamacare and not the debt, and not with the memory of the shutdown already faded and very few in a hurry to play a second game of chicken after appearing to lose round one only to a huge overtime win because of the ghastly and truly unprecedented collapse of Obamacare's rollout. We can debate forever what went wrong and right in the fall and whether Senator Cruz's branding strategy was inspired or a near disaster, but in early February, 2014, the GOP looks to be in a solid position to win a convincing victory in the fall --if they don't blow it right now.
Some observations: Though various GOP electeds have tried to interest people in the issue, no one but no one --NO ONE as is "ZERO"-- is calling or emailing the show exercised about "risk corridors" and bailouts for insurance companies that haven't happened yet. Very few people understand what it means and those that do aren't making the phone ring. People. Don't. Care.
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