The crisis seems to have been averted – at least this time. In up-to-the-minute news, President Barack Obama held a third news conference this week to announce that an agreement has been reached to raise the debt ceiling. While the details aren’t yet public or even finalized, the basic outline is known.
The New Plan
The plan would raise the debt ceiling through 2012 in two different stages. During the first stage there would be a $1 trillion spending cut which would be effective immediately. There would then be a panel created in congress to recommend and then get through an additional $1.8 trillion in spending cuts.As Obama said during his press conference,
“The result would be the lowest level of annual domestic spending since Dwight Eisenhower was president but at a level that still allows us to make job-creating investments in things like education and research. We also made sure that these cuts wouldn’t happen so abruptly that they’d be a drag on a fragile economy.”
While Obama admits that the plan isn’t a perfect one, he said that “This compromise does make a serious down payment on the deficit reduction we need and gives each party a strong incentive to get a balanced plan done before the end of the year.”He pointed out that, most importantly, the plan allows the government to avoid a default.
The Uphill Battle
Before everyone in America starts celebrating, however, it will be quite an uphill battle to get this plan accepted in the House. As Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Emmanuel Cleaver said in an interview on MNSBC, the plan is a “sugar-coated Satan sandwich.”Now that’s blunt.Now we’ll have to wait and see if House and Senate leaders can work their magic to convince members to come on board with the “Satan sandwich.”