Obama: I’m not budging but here's a hint

US President Barack Obama speaks during a press conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington DC 8 October 2013 Did Obama suggest a way out for Republicans or was it a throwaway line?

President Barack Obama is playing hardball, but there was one throwaway line that suggested a way forward, a very slight concession.

In his news conference he repeatedly accused Republicans in the House of Representatives of "demanding ransom", "extortion" and "hostage-taking".

He also kept saying that he would talk to anyone about anything - but not until the shutdown was lifted and there was agreement on the debt ceiling.

"Stop the excuses - take the vote - end the shutdown today," he said.

He also said he understood why it was difficult for Republicans to vote to lift the debt ceiling - it's a lousy name that suggested the debt itself was being increased.

There are no more rabbits in the hat, Mr Obama said. If it didn't happen there would be economic chaos.

But the barest glimmer of a suggestion came when he said that the Republicans could vote to lift the threat for the period that it took to negotiate.

That was pretty much a throwaway line, but it could be a way forward for some.

But not others. One conservative strategist I spoke to told me his side thought that breaching the debt ceiling would not be a disaster and they would be trying hard to get that line out.

While Mr Obama noted "the usual messy process of American democracy", he said twice he was taking a stand now for future presidents who could not be expected to choose between "world-wide catastrophe and making concessions to one faction of one party of one House".

Very near the end he said: "I'm not budging."

The president has been so clear, so often, that he cannot blink. But he has offered a way out if the Republicans step back from the brink.

Within the hour, Republican House Speaker John Boehner had rejected the president's suggestion, calling it a demand for unconditional surrender.

He said they needed something in return. I know that sounds like a pretty firm rejection, but I wonder.

He didn't mention Obamacare, and only talked about the cost of government.

It may be a long way from resolution but the two men are engaging in negotiations of a sort, even if it is in public via megaphone.

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  • rate this

    Comment number 280.

    249. norm762

    So by that definition the Areas/ States that have the most people in Them do NOT count as much because they are Not leaning Right and therefore don't represent the population of the USA.


  • rate this

    Comment number 279.

    If only the Tea Party were real rebels they would have stood up to Bush like Obama, put they are stools manipulated by NWO who want public services outsourced to their private business cronies

    In USA Tea Party shut down Government
    In UK Tories shut down Government
    Union Call London

    None of them fought against illegal wars.

  • rate this

    Comment number 278.

    @256. Kuselo Kamau

    I agree on all counts there

    Thing is this right now, the arguments in America are.
    1. I don't want to pay for Healthcare for people who choose to be poor
    2. Healthcare is not a right, that's socialism
    3. This is the best country in the world and we don't care what you think because any argument would be unpatriotic

    This bill for all its flaws will change that perception

  • rate this

    Comment number 277.

    223. Scott0962

    "Looking on the bright side, President Obama finally has a problem he hasn't tried to blame George Bush for."
    No need with the right-wing, theocratic, neosecessionist, anarco-capitalist, FOX/GOP/TEA/NRA/Corporatist Party clearly to blame.

    224. The closer the TEAP gets to the tactics of Weather Undergrond, and Brigate Ross the Better MK and others like it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 276.

    BS Yanks particularly Tea Party 100% Paranoid of




    Blacks doing well especially Presidents

    Banning Guns

    Helping poor


    Obama has been labelled linked inferred with all of the above slurs

  • rate this

    Comment number 275.

    ref #274 Sorry meant PATCO

  • rate this

    Comment number 274.

    ref #269 Breaking AIPAC was a great moment in the labor movement and the economy and foriegn policy were much stronger hjen he left. not to mention the breaking of the Berlen wall.
    President Obama blocked the death benefits to families of fallen soilders trather than comprtomise

  • rate this

    Comment number 273.

    Do we allow Petty Ugly Yanks to complain on BBC Hell No
    United States is just trade money. Is not like in France where - in France or in England the system is different beca' it's democratic socialism, y'know what I mean (chuckles). In America it's scientific capitalism - is trade, and if you don't have money to pay certain big law-firm then you cannot regroup certain t'ings.

  • rate this

    Comment number 272.

    Let’s hope nature waits for this nonsense to stop. The USGS at present has two unpaid volunteers watching the seismographs for the whole country!

  • Comment number 271.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 270.

    12. PD31 and others
    Do we "negotiate" when bank robbers say, "give us the money and nobody gets hurt" or pirates who say, "give us what we want and only a few people will get hurt, or with TEA Party radicals who say, "give us everything we want and only those we don't like will be hurt!"?

    NO, we refuse and go after them. Mr. President, go get them!

  • rate this

    Comment number 269.

    232. "Reagan was a far wiser men then either Dem loser" Gulp! Reagan was a former Ca Governor and Actor! He played the role of president and his key achievement: busting the air traffic control union and setting back US aviation irreprably, currently on a par with the roads and bridges nation wide that are in critical need of repair. He left a nation in ruins, but still the world's #1 warmonger.

  • rate this

    Comment number 268.

    264. That's true. A bootstrapping process is required.

    >263. (one armed armchair economist) wrote: "austerity works despite"

    all the evidence of it failing miserably.

  • rate this

    Comment number 267.

    It hasn't worked yet, in fact, there are many people renouncing citizenship, laying off workers, closing their businesses for good, and limiting hours for their labor. Printing money only increases the scale between haves and have nots. It has to be circulated to new businesses that are likely to succed to be worth any economic improvement to have the effect you're referencing.

  • rate this

    Comment number 266.

    Nickel and Diming
    White people catch skin cancer due to melanin deficiency and should have higher premiums

  • rate this

    Comment number 265.

    ACA You're Welcome
    Americans are up in Arms with African American President which shows how little they thought of Romney's Presidential foot in mouth credentials

  • rate this

    Comment number 264.

    263 Your Herbert Hoover mentality doesn't work. In times of depression and recession, printing money to create jobs, opportunity, encourage new enterprise works. Investment makes an economy stronger, creates wealth. Hunkering down like Europe does achieves nothing. But Europe can't compete in a global market unless it does something better or cheaper than others. It does neither.

  • rate this

    Comment number 263.

    ref #260

    most of Europe is collapsing and the Germans are bailng them out.

    austerity works despite what cluelss boobs like Paul Krugman tell you and no I don't care that the corrupt nobel commitee awarded him a prize.

  • rate this

    Comment number 262.

    Dog Work
    It's good that the President and Rest of the World can see how uncivil nasty Americans can really be, beneath the fake facade preamble of how wonderful they are

  • rate this

    Comment number 261.

    The climatic conditions that follows the puzzling truth that keeps haunting the Republicans and its third radical wing the Tea baggers is the unbelievable truth of the new occupants of the White House, and that has forced them to deny his birthright, the presidency, their re-election and finally Obamacare, a landmark historic legacy, not for Kenyan-American. It hurts the Republican pharaohs.


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