The first meeting on the long, hard road to a debt deal occurred Thursday. President Obama met with top officials from both parties in an effort to work something out before the assigned August 2nd deadline. The meeting was successful, in a baby steps sort of way. The New York Times reports that Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner gave the room a run down of the greater effects of what could happen should they fail to make a deal, “and everybody acknowledged that there’s going to be pain involved politically on all sides,” Obama told reporters afterwards. Everyone agreed they must make a deal before the deadline in order to avoid "the upheaval [Geithner] said would reverberate through financial markets and the broader American economy if the government were to go into default." No one was allowed to comment on the specifics of what was discussed but we do know a few things:
There are three deals on the table: "a small deal that would shrink the federal deficit by just over $2 trillion over 10 years that would be accompanied by a vote to raise the debt ceiling through November 2012; a $3 trillion deal; and deal in the range of $4 trillion," says The Wall Street Journal.