It’s time to Break It Down!
Rafael Edward “Ted” Cruz, the Texan by way of Canada, has leveraged his15 minutes of fame into 15 days, and he is going for more. Senator Cruz, the architect of the idea to defund, disassemble, or delay Obamacare has launched himself into the role of de facto leader of the GOP/Tea Party.
After serving a little more than 10 months in the U.S. Senate, Mr. Cruz has bedazzled a key segment of his GOP/Tea Party contemporaries in the Senate and more importantly, in the House of Representatives. He has managed to lead them in Pied Piper fashion to shut down the federal government, and to threaten to drive the country into one of the unenviable annals of geo-political history, that of our first-ever default.
Many close observers, including several in the Grand Ol’ Party have given voice to the notion that the Junior Senator from Texas does not find his motivation from a desire for his Party to attain a perch on ideological or political high ground. Rather they think he derives his impetus from the prospect that his crusade may enable him to take the lead in the 2016 race for the GOP Nomination for the White House. Moreover, even some GOP insiders insist that his gambit has harmed their beloved Party, and more importantly, the American people.
A little over two years ago, in August 2011, Standard & Poor’s (S&P) issued America it’s first-ever credit downgrade, moving it’s rating from AAA (Outstanding) to AA+ (Excellent), and this was after Congress reach an agreement to avert a default. Fast forward to the here and now, and a few Republican voices are actually contending that crossing the threshold of the October 17th deadline for resolving the debt ceiling crisis is not a disaster for either the economy, not the country. This is a position that flies in the face of the fact the economy has lost an estimated $20 billion during the first 15 days of the partial government shutdown.
If that were not enough, yesterday, credit rating agency Fitch warned that it might downgrade U.S. debt. Last time, S&P opted to issue a downgrade, even though Congress did not actually default on the nation’s debt. What are the chances we might blow through the deadline, without experiencing similar consequences?
Fitch has already placed its “AAA” U.S. rating on “rating watch negative,” a potential prelude to a downgrade. The 2011 S&P downgrade was an historic first. If the country crosses the debt ceiling deadline, midnight tonight, it would mark yet another dubious and inauspicious American first. When I consider the lunacy associated with the actions that that have yet again driven us to the economic brink, it is hard to argue against the premise that these United States are “Exceptional”…in a bad way. For all the crowing and posturing, that invariably hovers around this faux construct, antics such as this tarnish in a most high profile way, the validity of that position.
Senator Cruz has refused, up to this point, to relinquish his hold on the title, Anti-Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) Poster Child. Moreover, he appears to revel in it. The Senate, according to a number of news accounts, is on a path to forge a compromise. Through yesterday, the House was reticent to get on board with the idea.
As we enter the proverbial 11th hour, speculation persists that there will be a last-minute deal. While I offer no prediction on the timing, I do believe the impasse is near an end. Moreover, after all that has happened, I am convinced that one thing is clear – Cruz Control: The Road to Default is Paved with Bad Intentions!
I’m done; holla back!
To subscribe, click on Follow in the bottom right hand corner of my Home Page at http://thesphinxofcharlotte.com; enter your e-mail address in the designated space, and click on “Sign me up.” Subsequent editions of “Break It Down” will be mailed to your in-box.
For more detailed information on a variety of aspects relating to this post, consult the links below: