According to ABC’s Jonathan Karl House Republicans are seriously considering a “Doomsday plan” should the White House continue with their unreasonable proposals for avoiding the fiscal cliff.
It’s quite simple: House Republicans would allow a vote on extending the Bush middle class tax cuts (the bill passed in August by the Senate) and offer the President nothing more: no extension of the debt ceiling, nothing on unemployment, nothing on closing loopholes. Congress would recess for the holidays and the president would face a big battle early in the year over the debt ceiling.
Two senior Republican elected officials have told Karl that this becoming the most likely scenario.
Under one variation of this Doomsday Plan, House Republicans would allow a vote on extending only the middle class tax cuts and Republicans, to express disapproval at the failure to extend all tax cuts, would vote “present” on the bill, allowing it to pass entirely on Democratic votes.
The reason for the strategy the motion passes so the GOP avoids taking the blame for the tax increases for households <$250K and their vote “present” signals their objection to the tax increases on households making more than $250K.
As one senior Republican in Congress told me, “You don’t take a hostage you aren’t willing to shoot.” Republicans aren’t willing to kill the middle class tax cuts, even if extending them alone will make it harder to later extend tax cuts on the wealthy.
The GOP hasn’t shown up in this war of “misinformation” waged by the progressives. I am not sure how giving in to the president’s class warfare and trying to fight it down the road helps.
Ed Morrissey at Hot Air suggests
The true doomsday option, other than flying off the fiscal cliff like Thelma and Louise, would be to pass Obama’s latest offer through a House vote where Republicans vote “present.” The negative impact those policies have on the economy would be completely owned by Obama and Democrats. That would create a lot of pain and economic damage that could be mitigated by good-faith negotiation between the parties, but if Democrats refuse to engage in such, then the political options are all that remain for the GOP.
Ed might be correct but it seems as if the GOP has bungled this from the start by throwing the Norquist pledge under the bus without receiving anything in return. They assumed Obama would come up with cuts to match their higher revenue and the GOP leadership seemed genuinely surprised when Obama kicked that can down the road.
If the GOP is going to attempt the “Doomsday Plan” they should first demonstrate some fight and backbone, lay out their case and sell it to the voters…. otherwise they will need another doomsday plan once congress reconvenes in January.