Senate Dems look past sequester to government shutdown fight
Ever since Senate Democrats unveiled their plan to avert the sequester with a mix of new revenues and spending cuts, there has been no negotiations between the Democratic and Republican leadership offices in the Senate about it, a senior Senate Democratic aide tells me. No discussions about any potential compromises. No signal to Harry Reid’s office of any kind from Mitch McConnell that Republicans may be open to even discussing new revenues.
That’s not terribly surprising, given that Republicans are adamantly opposed to asking for even a penny in new revenues from the wealthy in order to avert a sequester that they themselves say will damage the military and the economy. But it highlights the emerging view among Democratic aides about how this is likely to play out.
Democrats believe the real action on the sequester has yet to come, and will ramp up in earnest in March. Which means, of course, that the cuts will kick in. Democrats no longer see the sequester as sufficient to force Republicans to cave on new revenues; rather, they increasingly see the looming government shutdown deadline of March 27th as the real means for them to force a GOP surrender.
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