From crisis to crisis, Congress is addicted to rocks

Take Republican Representative Kevin Cramer of North Dakota. Acknowledged by reporters, Mr Cramer extended praise for the increase in the short-term loan limit provided by Mr McConnell. He called it elegant, praising the Senate leader’s cunning in preserving filibusters and depriving Democrats of a powerful political argument against his party. It also averted a potentially catastrophic omission. But Mr Cramer still would not vote to allow it to go ahead.

“I don’t think I will,” he said.

In the end, 11 Republicans, including retired members with nothing to lose and members of the leadership, shot and sent the bill forward. It ultimately passed with only Democratic votes, and still must be approved by the House before it can hit President Biden’s table. The action is expected next week, a few days before an expected default.

Senator Roy Blunt, the veteran Missouri Republican who is retiring and was one of 11, spoke for many, grumbling in the hallway: “Can’t explain anything in this place.”

The procrastination was clearly contagious. Even the subway carrying lawmakers, staff, media and visitors between the Capitol and Senate office buildings broke down on Thursday, leaving some lucky riders stuck for a brief period. He too had reached his limit.

The underlying debt battle is over whether Democrats will raise the debt limit through routine procedures or through a more complex budgeting process, a technical distinction so fine that it is almost certainly indistinguishable to almost every American who lives with the Budget Control Act. is not familiar.

“I don’t think they understand it one bit,” said Senator John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, members of the public. “It’s confusing for the people who work here.”

“The debt ceiling debate is absurd with a capital A,” said Senator Ron Wyden, the Oregon Democrat who leads the finance committee.

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