Philip Klein argues that the Boehner plan was a costly waste of time.
Throughout the week, House Speaker John Boehner’s plan to raise the debt limit was attacked on two fronts. Democrats said he was wasting time on a plan that had no chance of passing the Senate, while conservatives argued that pushing the plan was undermining Cut, Cap and Balance. By deciding to add a Balanced Budget Amendment to his own plan this morning to gain enough votes to secure passage, Boehner proved both sets of critics correct.
The main selling point for the Boehner plan, if there was one, was that whatever the Senate Democratic opposition, it at least was within the general ballpark of something that had a reasonable chance of becoming law. And there was the hope that if his plan passed, Democrats might fold. But the addition of the new BBA takes this selling point away.
And Megan McArdle notes that the earmarks ban has come back to haunt Boehner; he probably could have found the votes he needed if he had goodies to hand out.