Politico’s Jim VandeHei joined Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough on Wednesday morning to debate whether the business community could compel House Speaker John Boehner to buck his GOP caucus and either pass a clean continuing resolution or raise the debt ceiling, with both believing that Boehner’s hand will eventually be forced.
“I do not believe he will allow default to happen,” VandeHei said. “He’s saying what he’s saying because he knows at the end of the day he will have to lift the debt limit. This is a guy who has a business background, who gets a ton of money, and talks to them all the time. In private he keeps telling people, ‘I’ve got your back and I have a plan.’ Nobody believes he has a plan. They are hoping an idea materializes between now and catastrophe that gives him a plan.”
“We have seen this a million times,” Scarborough said. “It’s always the business community that comes down and not only talks to Republicans, but talks to Democrats. It’s almost like a Jedi mind trick. ‘You will not allow the government to fall.’ And they go, ‘We will not allow the government to fall.’ And then they do a deal. It happens time and time again.”
“The only thing that’s different is the Republican Party used to be more responsive to big business; now they’re much more responsive to the grass roots,” VandeHei replied. “You’re talking about the rank and file members, they don’t care what Wall Street wants. John Boehner does.”
“If [JPMorgan Chase CEO] Jamie Dimon goes to John Boehner and says, ‘Listen, you have need a clean up or down vote. You can even vote against it, just put a clean up or down vote on the floor.’ John Boehner’s not going to say no to that,” Scarborough said.
“I think, sadly, it’s going to be one of those awful solutions we keep having, which is, let’s give it another month, see if we can come up with a grand bargain,” VandeHei said. “There’s no grand bargain to be had. I can’t emphasize that enough. A grand bargain was plausible last December, when you didn’t have that tax increase already kicking in. Remember, there were going to be tax increases no matter what, so there was the leverage and capacity to get Republicans to accept taxes and get the entitlement reform. It doesn’t exist anymore. Republicans are not going to raise taxes to get entitlement reform, they’re not going to get rid of the defense funds held in sequestration. So there’s not a grand bargain to be had, other than in John Boehner’s dreams.”
Watch the full clip below, via MSNBC:
[Image via screengrab]
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