Here is a blog post at Weasel Zippers, via Instapundit, about how in 2006 AD all the US Senators who were members of the Democratic Party voted AGAINST raising the debt limit.
Of course they did. In 2006 the Republicans were in firm control of the US Senate, although not with enough votes to override a Presidential Veto. The Democratic Party and the Democratic Party Senators on Capitol Hill looked down on President Bush and viewed him as a mere shrub. Their vote against raising the debt ceiling, including the votes of Senators Kennedy (D-MA), Kerry (D-MA), Dodd (D-CN), Biden (D-DE) and Clinton (D-NY), were just protest votes. The Republicans, by themselves, had the votes to pass the increase in the debt ceiling. If it had been a real contest and ten Republican had voted Nay, then some Democrats would have had to "break ranks" and vote Yea.
This year is different. This year the Democrats in the US Senate have the votes to pass the increase in the debt ceiling. They even have the "tie breaking" vote, President of the Senate Joseph Biden. However, they don't have the votes in the House of Representatives, so thus they have to cut a deal. Apparently they don't know how.
Over at Keith Hennessey's Blog we have one man's breakdown of the factions at work. I am not sure of all the dealing myself, but this seems reasonable.
I also suspect that the clock is ticking and only when it gets close to 2 August will the various factions cut a deal—and Washington being Washington, the clerks on Capital Hill will be tweaking the wording of the legislation after the Congress has voted and maybe after the President has signed. That, ladies and gentlemen, is both an embarrassment and a step down the road to strong man government. To characterize it, worse that Senator Mitch McConnell's suggestion to give the President power to raise the debt ceiling at will, subject to a legislative veto, but not much worse.
Regards — Cliff
♠ One is reminded of Senator Kerry's "I voted for it before I voted against it."
10 months ago