POLITICS

Budget deal: From ‘Hell no’ to ‘Alright’

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Politics,Chris Stirewalt,Power Play

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• Budget deal: From ‘Hell no’ to ‘Alright’
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BUDGET DEAL: FROM ‘HELL NO’ TO ‘ALRIGHT’ - House members in both parties are swallowing hard on a budget deal set for debate and a possible vote today, but a pathway is clearing for the first long-term spending plan since 2007. As one House Republican was heard saying by Fox News First, he went from “Hell no” to “just plain no” to “alright.”  What turned the tide seems to have been a combination of brawn and brains. House Speaker John Boehner hit hard Wednesday against outside groups attacking the bill: “They're using our members and they're using the American people for their own goals. This is ridiculous.” A closed-door presentation from Budget Chairman Paul Ryan helped convince anxious conservative members that this represented some policy gains and not just a chance to steer around a politically damaging and distracting government shutdown. But will Democrats play along and deliver enough House votes to offset Republican defections?

Hidden leverage for Dems in deal? - Jonathan Strong reports at National Review: “The bill includes language from the Senate Democrats’ budget that voids senators’ ability to raise a budget ‘point of order’ against replacing the sequester cuts with tax increases. The process is quite complicated, but in practice it grants Harry Reid the authority to send tax increases to the House with a bare majority, rather than the 60-vote threshold that would be required under a point of order.”

BAIER TRACKS: SPEAKER TURNS UP THE VOLUME…“For all of the anger Speaker John Boehner aimed at various conservative groups for trying to kill the budget agreement – telling reporters yesterday, ‘It's ridiculous!!’ – I am told he was far more animated behind closed doors with the members of the Republican Conference. (I tried to get Congressman Tom Price, R-Ga., to spill the beans on that discussion when he took the Center Seat on our panel, but he didn't really bite.) Bottom line, Boehner has had it with those groups trying to divide Republicans and fundraise on the divisions. Expect more of these outbursts from the normally placid speaker.” – Bret Baier.

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