Hume to House GOP on debt ceiling: Take what you can get, ‘plenty of more bites at this apple’

Jeff Poor Media Reporter
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As the showdown over the debt ceiling enters another week, the possibility the GOP will be blamed if a deal is not struck seems more and more likely, says Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume.

On “Fox News Sunday,” Hume said a “grand” bargain between the opposing sides was still theoretically possible, but with the August 2 deadline approaching, time is too short to come to terms on a deal that would substantially alter America’s budgetary landscape.

“[I] think as a practical matter, I think they are willing but the obstacles to it are too great and time is too short to get there with this,” Hume said. “First of all, the components of it are numerous and the amount of legislation to get it done to get it in place is so extensive and I just don’t think it is feasible to pass in time. We are going to need to do something ahead of that to get it done. The other thing that is striking about that is you know we got the rating’s agencies out there issuing dire warning and all this.”

Hume added he didn’t think the House GOP should push negotiations to the brink. He said there would be other opportunities to cut government spending, and Republicans should take what they can get this go-around.

“Remember now, what we are talking about here is to enact something that keeps the government for a while, and they are going to be plenty of more bites at this apple,” Hume said.

“The Senate never passed anything. There is no budget. And you know there will be another day of reckoning down the road. This is simply a measure to keep the government open for a while. But there is no real budget. I mean, we’ve got a long way to go and we’re going to be fighting the fight it seems to me again and again, which is why I think House Republicans would be wise to say, ‘Let’s take what we can get on this and go along with our leader.'”

The danger in not following this approach, according to Hume, is that the House GOP could be blamed by the public if a deal is not reached, despite the fact that the House is the only body that has voted in favor of a solution.

“Or the thing I think they [Republicans] should worry about is you pass a short-term, you know, six months or so, bill that keeps the government going and with a batch of spending cuts, and it gets rejected by the Senate and/or vetoed by the president and we have a shutdown even though the Senate hasn’t passed anything and the president hasn’t presented anything specific. And the House will be the only body that has acted and still it’s possible, the scenario we saw in the Clinton years plays out again for the Republicans to get all of the blame.”