positing 11-dimensional chess to explain US politicians' choices is a losing game, usually.

with that as caveat, i think the biden administration's strategy is to tempt republicans into a set of demands that can be portrayed to the public as unreasonable and extortionate.

that creates *political* justification to defang the debt ceiling, using any of the variety of technical and legal workarounds available (and probably the ones Biden hasn't publicly discussed at all so far). 1/

@interfluidity The simpler 5D chess move might be baiting the Republicans' extortionate demands and then *let them* shut down the government over those stupid reasons and make sure voters know it.

@LouisIngenthron i'm not sure a government shutdown (as the Republicans sometimes foolishly talk themselves into during budget negotiations) is an option on the table here. i think it relies on statute that allows debt payments and "essential operations" or "skeleton staffs" to continue to operate if no budget is passed, but there's not something like that for the debt ceiling. 1/


@interfluidity Wait, do we not have a precedent? Didn't this happen for a few months less than a decade ago?

@LouisIngenthron yes, but i'm pretty sure the context was a budget impasse, not a debt ceiling standoff.

@LouisIngenthron failing to pass a budget provokes a soft "shutdown". government workers get furloughed, services get bare-boned, people get mad and madder over time.

failing to raise the debt ceiling, though, provokes people not getting paid what they are owed, for work they do or have done, or for US debt that they hold. it's a harder cliff.

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