Speaker of the House Boehner has put all his weight behind passing the “Boehner” bill to raise the debt ceiling. No Democrat voted for it, 22 Republicans voted against it.
What happens now?
Harry Reid will take his Bill without anything the Republicans want, tear up the House Bill except for the Bill Number, “Substitute” his bill and pass it in the Senate, and bounce it back to the House.
The House has 3 main options at that point:
– do nothing
– Accept the Harry Reid Senate bill word for word by majority vote and send it to President Obama for his signature
– make changes to the Reid Bill – pretending to put back in the stuff Republicans want -and then send it to a “Conference Committee” made up of senior congressional leaders who will strip out all of the “tea party nonsense” outside the view of cameras, minutes and recorded votes. Once the Conference Committee “merges” the two versions, the final bill goes back to each house for a final up/down vote.
With each step, the pressure on the Tea Party to give up will grow. Today’s vote was kabuki theater. The only purpose is to give the 22 Tea Party freshman something to say “See, I tried!”, knowing that the outcome of increased spending was never in doubt.