Political Dysfunction in Washington Hurting the Economy and American Credibility

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With government offices closed, the Pentagon says it won’t pay death benefits to the families of combat casualties. Billionaire investment guru Warren Buffett compares failure to raise the debt ceiling to “a nuclear bomb.” How long can the US government lead the free world if it can’t keep its doors open or pay its bills? As Republicans and the White House hint at potential fixes, how long are they liable to last? Is there any permanent solution?

There’s a slight crack in the political pavement today from two influential right-wing advocacy groups. Heritage Action and Freedom Works are still adamant about keeping the government shut down until Obamacare is de-funded. But both say that refusing to increase the debt ceiling is going too far. President Obama says his Treasury Secretary is running out of emergency powers. Speaker Boehner responded that the President is demanding that Republicans “capitulate” before talks can begin.

Credits

Guests:
Mark Zandi - Moody's Analytics - @dismalscientist, Clive Crook - Bloomberg View - @clive_crook, Ron Brownstein - Senior Editor, The Atlantic - @RonBrownstein, Robert Draper - New York Times Magazine / National Geographic / GQ - @DraperRobert

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Andrea Brody, Anna Scott, Christian Bordal