Here are my guesses as to how the debt ceiling talks will turn out:
1. Like the extension of the Bush tax cuts last year and the continuing resolution that averted a government shutdown this year, I expect there to be a last-minute deal. The deal will go too far for the most liberal Democrats and not far enough for the most conservative Republicans, but will enough votes from members of both parties to pass.
2. There will be no increase in marginal rates or any broad-based taxes, but “tax expenditures” will be targeted. The vote could have Taxpayer Protecton Pledge implications for Republicans.
3. The longer-term the deal is, the worse it will be from a conservative perspective.
4. One possible sticking point: If the defense cuts are too big and nothing particularly serious is done about entitlements, the deal will be much harder to sell to conservatives.
5. Cut, Cap, Balance pledge-takers will likely be unhappy with the results.
Can’t guarantee any of this, but that’s the way things look to be headed to me.
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