Members of the bipartisan panel increasingly signal that they won't hit their Wednesday deadline to reduce the deficit and avoid automatic spending cuts. They took to the Sunday morning shows to blame each other.
It's not true that Democrats wouldn't consider cuts to entitlement programes, Rep. Xavier Becerra told Fox News Sunday, according to a Politico report.
"Everything has been on the table including reform of our entitlement programs," Becerra said. "The increase in eligibility (age for Social Security) has been on the table. And depending on what's in the package, it might have be or something that could be something that's in the package."
That view: Don't get hot and bothered if the panel fails to deliver. The battles will just be fought again after the next election – and maybe on that day the side with the best ideas will have more political clout.
Here's the latest word from New York Times columnist Paul Krugman on the left: "Don't we eventually have to match spending and revenue?" Yes, he says, but "it's a decision that should be made by voters, not by some committee that allegedly transcends the partisan divide."
Let the decisions on whether to raise taxes on the wealthy or to raise eligibility ages for Medicare and Social Security be made after voters have weighed in with their representatives about which they'd prefer. What an idea.
And, as The Wall Street Journal has noted, the market itself might not even care.
Update: Here's more from Sen. Pat Toomey, from Face the Nation this morning. If it's over, it's their fault, but we're still willing to talk, so ... there's a chance?
Meanwhile, Sen. John Kerry was blasting Toomey's plan over on Meet the Press:
We have reached "full-scale blame game," Politico reports.