Boehner Offers to Delay Hostage Taking Until Thanksgiving

| Thu Oct. 10, 2013 2:40 PM EDT

Like everyone, I guess, I'm having trouble keeping track of what's really going on today. My best reading of the tea leaves is that John Boehner plans to offer President Obama a clean 6-week debt ceiling extension in exchange for a willingness to negotiate over the budget. Or something. Maybe there will actually be some strings attached. It's hard to tell.

But it's hard to fathom the point of a 6-week extension even if it comes without formal strings attached. The fact that Republicans are insisting that Obama negotiate with a debt ceiling breach looming over him is a tacit admission that the debt ceiling is still being used as a threat. Right? Or am I missing something here?

I suppose Obama would have to sign a clean extension regardless. And he probably should. And who knows? Anything can happen in six weeks. But it's a little hard to see that this accomplishes anything except to guarantee a Thanksgiving hostage crisis instead of a Halloween hostage crisis.

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