Several Steps Remain Before the Debt Ceiling Is Raised

Sunday night’s announcement of a deal to raise the debt ceiling was the crucial moment after months of high-stakes wrangling.

But it’s not over yet.

During the next 60 hours, the legislative leaders who shook hands with each other must sell the deal to their wary members, something that could still pose a thorny political challenge.

And then — with the Tuesday deadline for a default looming — they must turn the “framework” into legislative language and pass it through both chambers of Congress — not an easy task for institutions, especially the Senate, which are not known for moving with haste.

Here are the steps that remain:

THE HOUSE: House Speaker John A. Boehner told his members that he would bring the legislation to the House floor “as soon as possible,” apologizing for not being more precise.

“My hope would be to file it and have it on the floor as soon as possible. I realize that’s not ideal, and I apologize for it,” Mr. Boehner said, according to a transcript of his remarks provided by his aides.

“Our framework is now on the table that will end this crisis in a manner that meets our principles of smaller government,” he said.

THE SENATE: Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, told his colleagues that the Senate would reconvene at 11 a.m., though it was not clear whether the chamber could vote on the final package that quickly. Typically, the only way for the Senate to move quickly is when there are no objections from any senators.

“To pass this settlement, we’ll need the support of Democrats and Republicans in both the House and the Senate,” he said. “There is no way either party in either chamber can do this alone.”

THE PRESIDENT: Once both chambers pass the legislation, it will have to go to President Obama for his signature. In brief remarks Sunday night, Mr. Obama made clear he will sign the legislation quickly.

Article source: http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/07/31/several-steps-remain-before-the-debt-ceiling-is-raised/?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

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