With everything else you hear about the “Super Committee”, remember this. The ‘trigger’ cuts are dire. But they don’t come into effect until early 2013, after the 2012 election. In 2012 nothing happens. So if committee Republicans refuse any revenue increases and no agreement is reached, the consequences of the failure to agree move to the top of the 2012 agenda. Sharp cuts to Social Security and Medicare or tax hikes on dollars made over $250,000 per year. It’s a frame for the 2012 election Republicans are very much trying to avoid. So the incentives for both sides on the committee are not necessarily what they seem.
Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.