The Debt Limit and Economic Brinksmanship

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With the first default in US government history predicted for August 2, President Obama has rejected any short-term fix. Tomorrow, he's invited the top two Democratic and Republican leaders of both parties to visit the White House "to do something big." Treasury Secretary Geithner says default would mean economic catastrophe. Speaker John Boehner says Obama doesn't understand "economic and legislative reality," but will show up at the White House tomorrow. "Legislative reality" could mean that Boehner can't control his own Republican members, many of whom deny that default will have dire consequences and see it as an opportunity to force massive spending cuts, even if the government has to shut down.  Should the President be happy to get even a short-term fix? Has he already made so many concessions that Republicans could claim victory?




Warren Olney