On Morning Joe Wednesday morning, NBC News Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd said President Barack Obama may get a “life raft” from lame duck status when House Republicans attempt a government shutdown over Obamacare funding.
“The only reason why there isn’t this rush to declare ‘He’s fully in lame duck status’ is, number one, he’s fully relevant with these budget debates, and number two, the Republicans are figuring out a way to hand the political momentum back to him, as they can’t figure out how to proceed on keeping the government funded,” Todd said. “All [the White House] is counting on is the self-destruction of the Republicans in the House, and that’s the one thing that keeps them from feeling totally under siege…It’s a House Republican life raft.”
Todd said the chances of a government shutdown were rising as it becomes increasingly unlikely that House Speaker John Boehner can pass a budget with his own members that doesn’t affect Obamacare, or a budget that affects Obamacare that will get enough Democratic votes.
“Does the White House acknowledge how profoundly cynical it is to just be abdicating the entire leadership mantle, and saying ‘I hope a minority of members of the House do something stupid?'” Nicolle Wallace asked.
“I think they would turn that around and say the cynical approach is the one being done by the Republicans,” Todd said. “The White House says, hey, we went through this in 2011, we went through this in 2012. They feel they did blink, they caved when they had to cave. In their mind, they believe the House Republicans have never given an inch on anything. It’s always been this to-the-brink atmosphere.”
“They run the government,” Wallace replied. “They run the Senate. The notion there are Republicans—I mean, we run one chamber.”
“And we don’t even run it well,” host Joe Scarborough said.
Watch the full clip below, via MSNBC:
[Image via screengrab]
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