Debt Ceiling Deal: Obama 'Surrendered'
Krugman: It's a 'disaster' for the country, and shows he'll surrender again
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Aug 1, 2011 7:24 AM CDT
President Barack Obama speaks from the White House briefing room, Sunday, July 31, 2011, in Washington, about a deal being reached to raise the debt limit.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

(Newser) – President Obama caved deeply in a debt deal that made the Republicans big winners, with both Andrew Leonard and Paul Krugman arguing that he "surrendered." Their take:

  • “In the end, President Obama had to admit surrender,” writes Andrew Leonard in Salon, detailing “a smashing victory for the Tea Party and a crushing defeat for Democrats.” In Obama’s defense, he “had to choose between an awful deal or an outright catastrophe.” But he made a mistake in trying to sell it as a compromise. "The president said it was not 'the deal I would have preferred.' He should have said it's a bad deal that does not address the pressing needs of the nation," but one that he had no choice but to sign.

  • In the New York Times, Paul Krugman calls the deal “a disaster, and not just for President Obama and his party. It will damage an already depressed economy; it will probably make America’s long-run deficit problem worse, not better." But the damage won't be confined to those blows. "There will be more choke points where Republicans can threaten to create a crisis unless the president surrenders, and they can now act with the confident expectation that he will."
  • But the Washington Post doesn't use the S-word. “For a White House eager to improve its standing with centrist independents who have been fleeing Obama, even a losing deal can be a winning strategy,” write Peter Wallsten and David Nakamura. Obama "can declare himself a deficit hawk as he courts the political middle.”

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Showing 3 of 67 comments
Aug 2, 2011 11:11 AM CDT
Barack Obama is no LBJ, I wish he had the backbone of the late President Johnson. He would have used the 14th Amendment with no questions asked. In fact, the Republicans (and Democrats) were so afraid of him until there would have been no questions about raising the debt ceiling in the first place. If LBJ wanted it then it would have been settled.
Dorian Mode
Aug 2, 2011 5:51 AM CDT
Yeah he folded again, well there goes my vote,out the window.
Aug 1, 2011 11:21 PM CDT
Yes, he did surrender because there was no such thing as a compromise with the radical right; They took a pledge to Grover Norquist that is inconsistent to their oath of office. So, yes, in this game of chicken that the tea party wanted to play, someone had to move or everyone would be negatively impacted. Hopefully, Congress can now move on to bills that reduce job exports, end wars, promote jobs in the US. But, I know better. Its time for the GOP to start beating their anti-gay, anti-choice, anti-science, and anti-environment drums in preparation for the 2012 elections to ensure that the ignorant citizens vote against their own best economic interests.