There are three scenarios I see playing out here on the debt ceiling.The least likely scenario is John Boehner’s plan barely makes it through the House and then the Senate Democrats say, “Okay, we’re out of time, let’s do it.” That’s what the GOP is telling themselves will happen. Senator Reid today quashed that idea by saying the Senate will vote tonight to kill Boehner’s plan.The more likely scenario is that Reid will either use Boehner’s plan as a shell to then pass Democrat ideas possibly including tax increases, White House policy preferences, etc. They will then send the bill back to the House and, since the shell will be John Boehner’s plan, the Democrats will dare John Boehner to kill his own legislation.
What seems most likely at this point The third scenario is that the Senate will kill Boehner’s plan tonight or tomorrow, then declare that we are out of time and insist on a “clean” debt ceiling increasing saying we’ll take care of all the other issues later. The GOP, having folded all the way down to a bare bones plan, will probably cave.And along the way we may lose our credit rating — the Chinese downgraded us today. Any way it works, the GOP will get the blame, the debt ceiling will go up, taxes will go up, and spending will most definitely not go down.The only way to stop it is for enough House Republicans to hold the line today and kill the Boehner plan.—————A friend of mine points out a fourth that he thinks is most likely and, having heard it, I’m both kicking myself for not thinking of it myself and also now have to say I completely think this is most likely.The Senate will kill Boehner’s plan and Mitch McConnell and Harry Reid will come up with a modified version of McConnell-Reid-Pelosi with some of Boehner’s stuff and kick it back to the House daring the House GOP to kill a bipartisan plan.Having pinged a few friends in the Senate on this scenario, they all had pretty much the same reply.This is different from the second in that they won’t use Boehner as a shell, but will construct something else.