Reading the tea leaves on debt ceiling negotiations
Rep. James Clyburn (D) SC characterizes Thursday's bi-partisan congressional meeting on raising the debt ceiling.
May 12th, 2011
07:47 PM ET

Reading the tea leaves on debt ceiling negotiations

WASHINGTON (CNN) - He gave it a "two thumbs up."  No that's not the latest take on the newest summer movie release.  This is Washington, a land where reporters try to read the tea leaves and politicians try their darndest to prevent us from doing so.  The reviewer in question is Rep. James Clyburn (D) SC and one member of a bi-partisan congressional group lead by Vice President Joe Biden tasked with somehow hammering out a compromise that would allow Congress to vote to raise this nation's borrowing limit.  The deadline: this summer or the United States could default on some of its loans.

Republicans Rep. Eric Cantor (R) VA and Sen. Jon Kyl (R) AZ left smiling. They answered no questions but they waved.  Hmmm.

But it was Vice President Joe Biden, never one to shy away from a microphone, who came over to reporters to dissect the two hour meeting.  "Nothing is agreed to until everything is agreed to," he said solemnly adding, "[W]hat we agreed to is tentative."   He did repeat the mantra of the Democrats, "[E]verything is on the table."  But he also gave a glimpse inside the negotiations including that yes tax revenues, the bane of Republicans and long-term Medicare costs, something Democrats dismiss are all being discussed.

The bottom line from the vice president: "It is premature to be optimistic but I am clearly not pessimistic."  Oh and no more meetings until the week after next since the House is on break next week back in their home districts.

soundoff (24 Responses)

    ACCOUNTABILITY: vp Biden is in charge of where the "EMERGENCY STIMULUS" monies were spent & jobs created.
    Is there anyone at CNN with any curiosity about how that $800 BILLION was spent, jobs created or why construction remains at over 35% unemployment rate????

    What – we heard all those PLEDGES about shovel ready jobs, green energy jobs, investing in the green energy grid...

    DEBT CEILING: How many times have we raised the debt ceiling....remember Obama pledging to comb the budget line by line to eliminate programs that don't work and reforming those we need......removing the $500 Billion in WASTE and FRAUD in the Medicare system.....

    WHAT – are we learning yet????????

    May 12, 2011 at 11:46 pm |
  2. Liz Carter in Georgia

    From what I can tell, everything you listed has happened, is on schedule to happen, or is still in the stonewalling process of being scorned and held hostage by the Republicans. OBAMA is not a DICTATOR! He's no Gadhafi, or Amadenijad remember? All he CAN do is list to us what his desires and goals are, hoping to get support for those things to be implemented from the WASHINGTON OBSTRUCTIONISTS. He hasn't TOTAL POWER to just say 'IT WILL BE DONE'! Because HE said it, they'll make SURE not to let it be done.

    May 14, 2011 at 10:22 am |
  3. Jay in NC

    All Barry can do is tell us what his desires and goals are then hope to get support. He is ineffective as a president.
    What this country needs is a president that can get things done. That is not so partisan. One that see that they are president of all the country not just selected special interest.

    With his 1 billion dollars reelection war chest, Barry is saying load and clear, I appose any one but my self. That's not being an American team player, that's a Barry team player. Thank goodness there will be an election soon.

    May 14, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
  4. Liz Carter in Georgia

    You are double-talking now. From the beginning of your post, you quoted what I said about the PRESIDENT, and then you said he must have been ineffective as president; couldn't get things done. Before you finished your comment, you said he needed to be president of all, not just selected special interests, which is not true, but you said it! You then said he was says load and clear; that he opposed everyone but himself! Effective?? You 'CONS' have rejected everything he's set out to do and you know it. HATE!

    May 14, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      I will break it down for you Liz,
      1) If all Barry can do is tell us what his desires and goals are then he is ineffective.

      2) This country needs a president that can get things done. One that sees that they are president of all the country not just special interests. I did not say that he is the one, I said that we need one that would do this.

      3) Being effective as a fund raiser or campaigner is not the same as a president.

      You are really stretching this one dear. Take the time to read before you complain.

      May 14, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  5. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Thank goodness...huh? Well sorry; wasted anticipation! Looking at your lot of Republican saps who claim to be running for the presidency, you cons are going to have a HARD JOB trying to choose the 'pick of the litter'! LOL! All of them are 'runts'! You often have the audacity to mention hypocrisy?!? They're liars, cheaters, double-talkers, cloakers, bigots, bribers, whitewashers, sabatogers, underminers, fear-mongerers, money-mizers, power-hungry assassins of people, character and righteousness! Good luck!

    May 14, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      Those are a lot of hateful words to use. Let's take one of the candidates, how about Mitt Romney? Is he all those things you have said? Taken given bribes? Please be more specific, otherwise you are just spewing hate.

      May 14, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  6. Liz Carter in Georgia

    I spew truth! Romney is a double-talking flip-flopper, who he publicly berated and denegrated PRESIDENT OBAMA'S Healthcare Plan and at the same time had implemented a simular one in Massachusetts. Michelle Bachman: power hungry, and has been called out for lying a few times. Newt Gingrich is a cheater, bigot and a undercover-nazi. Huckabee may have been OK, but Rand Paul was about the best you had until he put out his pro stance on heroine use and prostitution! BTW, everything you write is hate spew, Jay.

    May 14, 2011 at 11:33 pm |
  7. Jay in NC

    Mitt Romney advocates that state's citizens make their own choice for healthcare. That's why he passed the Mass. Health Care System, not the USA health care system. He understands states rights.

    Michell Bachman: called out for lying, who what when? Power hungry? Because she is considering being president? What would that make Barry?

    Newt Gingrich: cheater yes, on his wife. Isn't that a personal issue? Liberals rallied around Clinton when he 'did not have sex with that woman.' Hypocrites, plain and simple, Liberals have two standards, one for themselves and completely different one for others that they hate. Again be more specific with the undercover-nazi comment. Have never heard that one before.

    Huckabee would have been fantastic. It is a shame that it was not in the stars.

    Ron Paul?: He is unusual. Strongly believes that there should not be a war in Afghanistan, Iran, or Libya. I will have to read more abut the 'pro stance on heroine', Are you saying like when Barry sold drugs from a hot dog stand in Hawaii? About prostitution. Do you believe that a woman has the right to say what she does with her body? Liberals have been pushing that idea for 50 years.

    May 15, 2011 at 9:12 am |
  8. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Oh Jay, you know good and well Bachmann has been called out on her lies and vicious distortions of others comments and statements. One of the big ones is when she stood up on the House Floor, and said Americans needed to know that OBAMA'S healthcare advisors, one being Dr Ezekiel Emanuel, wanted healthcare to be reserved or set aside for the 'non-disabled', only! She even told a lie about 'the founding fathers'! Look up her lies under Bachmann vs The Truth, Jay! Power-hungry? FIRST US woman president. LOL!

    May 15, 2011 at 11:20 am |
    • Jay in NC

      I looked up what Barry's healthcare advisors Dr Ezekiel Emanuel said in part.. ".. services provided to individuals who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens are not basic and should not be guaranteed. An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia." Sounds to me like he is for limiting health care to those that are not disabled. I looks to me that she did not lie.

      Again using terms like flighty and unstable, yet no examples. I could say it is just distorted, nasty, blistering, fear-mongering and false political perception but I will leave the non substantive hate speech to you Liberals.

      I think Barry's billion dollar team is working hard to spin this their way. A saw the picture of his war room. All those busy interns dreaming up ways to lie to the American people. So much effort to sell one man. Power hungry Barry, 'My way or no way', is his motto.

      May 15, 2011 at 12:52 pm |
  9. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Bachmann is no HILLARY CLINTON! She's flighty and unstable, just like Palin. Neither of them in my view have shown me anything that would in the least qualify them to be good PRESIDENTS of THE UNITED STATES. They are just like most conservatives when they want back in; they run distorted, nasty, blistering, fearmongering, and false political perceptions on the masses. She has no real substance of any US PRESIDENTIAL thoughtfulness and LEADERSHIP!

    May 15, 2011 at 11:43 am |
  10. Liz Carter in Georgia

    'My way or no way, that's Barry's motto.' That's just another one of your typical hateful quips. Why don't you substantiate that remark? In the very next breath, you conservatives will be out here trolling that he's weak, he's not a leader, he hadn't done anything, he can't get things done, he's not being president of all! BTW, How many presidents have been able to satisfy all? Not one; no not one! That's why the motto you just gave 'Barry' could and should be shared by all of the previous ones. LOL!

    May 15, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      If a man spends 1 billion dollars on himself, it is obvious that he is self centered.

      May 15, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  11. Liz Carter in Georgia

    You can make that same claim for AMERICA'S TOP 3%, who're sitting up on billions and trillions of dollars, mostly funneled up to them from AMERICANS and the world, who claim or give us the perception that they're 'THE AMERICAN PATRIOTS'; they love their country and we're being 'un-AMERICAN if we don't keep funneling that 'welfare' up to them! The oil companies just proved that last week! Obama is NOT trying to spend a billion on himself; he's collecting money for his campaign as every other president has!

    May 16, 2011 at 11:26 am |
  12. Liz Carter in Georgia

    I said that. I said Bachmann told the house floor that Pres Obama's medical or health care advisors were wanting to reserve or set aside care for the 'non-disabled'! So the disabled need to watch out! They may not get care. That was a lie. It was debunked. I told you where to look. You turned right around and said 'Sounds to me like he is for limiting healthcare to those who are 'not disabled'. That it looked like to you she didn't lie! That quote of yours is the same thing I said.

    May 16, 2011 at 11:27 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      Liz, I truly thought that you said that Bachmann had lied about Dr. Emanuel. The quote I gave was from him. It looks like to me that it backed up what you said she said. I am not trying to twist words. I just do not think she lied about Dr. Emanuel. From his quote he does want with hold care from those "who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens" (his quote)

      Sorry if I got your words confused.

      Dr. Emanuel did say he wanted to limit heath care. Now the Democrats are backing up and trying to spin this differently. The fact is he did say it. It does give some insight into were the 'death panel' idea came from and why so many conservatives are saying that Liberals want to limit your heath care.

      May 17, 2011 at 9:01 am |
  13. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Why was it RYAN and others got so much flack out in their districts with the elderly about their ideas on the healthcare plan? Those old folk told them to leave their medicare alone! It seems to me the GOP conservatives are the real ones who're trying to limit it. Just because Emanuel said it, suggested it or talked about it to OBAMA doesn't mean he and liberals are for it. Emanuel may have been trying to take suggestions spawned from the conservatives to the PRESIDENT, in hopes that they would all agree.

    May 17, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      Arrrrrrggg! Why do we go around and around on these issues? You say that she lied about him. I found a quote that may be what she was talking about. You then say that he may have said it but it is the Republicans fault. Good grief this never ends, we never resolve anything. It is a moving target. It does not matter if someone proves that she did or did not lie about Dr. Emanuel, you will just expand the complaint to a unprovable claim that the Republicans did it.

      I do not see why you only see the bad in the Republican candidates. They are people just like you and me. They have their faults and their assets. I seriously doubt that Bachmann is evil, or a habitual lier. She has her point of view, it is different than your guys. Now I know how this game is played, you will now tell how the Republicans lie about Barry, that they try every chance they get to beat him down. OK, but what does his followers do? The very thing you accuse the Republicans of doing. It just goes around and around.

      I would love for someone out here to have a real debate. Not call names, not attack and run, not just slip into political rhetoric, pick a subject and debate the facts.

      May 17, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  14. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Ok,Jay. Is it not true that Ryan had trouble trying to sale his healthcare idea to those elderly people? My problem with Bachmann is she stood up there in the House and said that was what liberals wanted! Yes, Dr Emanuel may have contemplated it and advised it as a possible suggestion or alternative to the PRESIDENT, but that didn't mean it flew with the him nor any of his constituents, especially the ones closest to him the SENATE. For her to say that peope needed to know that's what they wanted, is wrong!

    May 17, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
  15. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Jay, you know I want the same thing you say you want; to resolve things sometimes too! However, I've learned the power of expansion of a complaint or issue to an unproveable claim from you! No matter what I've ever said, you've always expanded it; sometimes with proof and I've apologized to you on things that I saw I was blatantly wrong and you know this! Oh, that's something I'm yet to see you do. I still say BACHMANN's a liar! If a liberal had made that many mis-speaks, you'd be all over them; no excuses

    May 17, 2011 at 10:44 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      Big difference Liz, you like most Liberals on here just call someone a lier and do not offer any facts to back it up. So now I am the blame for your actions? I guess it is the way Liberals view the world, someone else is responsible not you, not your guy. Just like President Bush is to blame for all Barry's actions, I am now responsible for yours.

      May 18, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
  16. Liz in Carter in Georgia

    Oh no, Jay! No blame assigned to you for that, but a great big thanks! It gives me a concise picture and a better understanding of how you conservatives like to play your unfair anti-Obama political games on the blogosphere. It also gives me insight as to how the trick, double-talking blame game against the Obama administration's being played by your GOPsters in WASHINGTON. EXPANSION aka LIES! In my post of MAY 15, 2011 11:20 am ET, I DID offer you a fact and a place to look for yourself! Cry me a river!

    May 18, 2011 at 9:15 pm |
  17. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Oooops! RAND PAUL?!? Not that clown! I am so sorry, I just noticed I made a BIG mistake in my post of May 14, 2011 11:33 pm ET! I meant Ron Paul could potentially make a good president! They are two very different people! Rand sounds to me like a true bigot. He seems to be a hateful person.

    May 21, 2011 at 2:18 pm |