Boehner's Bargain to Get His Debt Plan Passed
The sweeteners Boehner had to add to get Tea Party Republican votes
Now that House Speaker John Boehner's bill to raise the debt ceiling passed the House on a 218 to 210 vote, it is headed to the Senate where Democrats have vowed to reject the bill tonight "within hours," reports The New York Times. White House press secretary Jay Carney issued a statement shortly after the vote saying. "This bill has been declared dead on arrival in the Senate." Despite such vows, Boehner's dealmaking to get the necessary votes -- all from Republicans as zero Democrats voted for his plan and 22 Republicans voted against -- came down to the wire. To win the support of Representative who came to the House with Tea Party support, Boehner had to sweeten the bill at the eleventh hour with a number of modifications. Here's a look at what persuaded those final Tea Partiers to switch to "yea":
Balanced Budget Amendment As CBS News reports, "House Speaker John Boehner was able to win over skeptical fiscal conservatives by requiring that a second debt ceiling increase roughly six months from now be tied to passage of a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution -- something that would require a two thirds majority in both the House and the Senate. Boehner had to cancel a planned vote on the measure last night because he did not have the votes for passage."
Spending Cuts The Hill newspaper reports that the new bill "authorizes $900 billion in additional borrowing while reducing the deficit by $917 billion over 10 years. The president could request a second increase in the debt ceiling of up to $1.6 trillion upon passage of the balanced-budget amendment and a separate $1.8 trillion deficit reduction package, to be written by a new 'joint committee of Congress.'"
What happens next? To avoid default, Boehner will have to compromise with leaders in the Senate and President Obama, GOP aides tell Roll Call. "Doing so will mean losing significant parts of his own Conference and will require Boehner to work with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) to cobble together enough Democrats and moderate Republicans to pass it in the House."