I finally figured out what the Republicans are up to with the debt showdown. Republican Senator Tom Coburn said last week: “I would dispel the rumor that is going around that you hear on every newscast, that if we don’t raise the debt ceiling, we will default on our debt. We won’t. We’ll continue to pay our interest.” The Government will be able to do that with their tax revenues, so the story goes.
By refusing to let the US Government borrow any more money, the Tea Party faction can force Obama to shut down everything except the military, social security, and interest payments on the debt. No money for things they don't like, especially Obamacare. When everyone wakes up on Friday to realize the world didn't end, Obama will have to negotiate, and the GOP can raise the debt ceiling for 90 days on Monday morning. Crisis over. The Tea Party faction will have pulled off a political masterstroke and finished the Reagan revolution.
Or so I am guessing. Its taking brinksmanship into previously unknown territory, but its brinkmanship all the same.
If my guess is right, then the tea party types will do their damnedest to prevent any vote at all until they get what they want. If they don't allow a vote, then Boehner can't fold and compromise with the Democrats. With party discipline, nobody, not Obama, not the Senate, not the Courts, can stop them. The House GOP will effectively run the country until at least January 2015.
For their ploy to work, Obama has to be able to pay for at least Social Security the military and interest on the national debt out of taxes and not be able to use any executive tricks to keep borrowing. If the Tea Party faction are wrong about this, there will be an economic meltdown and a political showdown. Nobody can say what would happen, but it wouldn't be good.