Some of the most senior and well-respected members of the Democratic caucus are simply disgusted with being force-fed the debt deal President Obama, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) hashed out with GOP Congressional leaders, but many will likely hold their noses and vote for it anyway.
The anger and disappointment is painfully obvious when you talk to some of the liberal stalwarts of the caucus. Pelosi told ABC News’ Diane Sawyer earlier Monday that she planned on voting for the deal, even though she considered it a ‘Satan sandwich with a side of Satan fries” simply because there were no other viable options.Rep. George Miller (D-CA), a key Pelosi ally, was practically seething and would not say whether he would end up voting for the deal, although he seemed like he was leaning toward voting for it despite his disdain.
“We’ll see how it unfolds,” Miller told TPM when asked how he planned to vote. “I think this is a bad, bad, bill but default is a very serious matter.”
“I think we’re going to look back at this day as the day America stopped reinvesting in itself, he added.
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), of the most liberal members of the House, would like to vote against the debt deal, but acknowledged that Democrats have very little choice — either pass the measure or plunge the country into default.
The vote will not be without its drama on the Democratic side of the aisle. The Congressional Black Caucus circulated a message to its members Monday afternoon instructing them to withhold their vote until the very end of Friday evening’s 15-minute vote on final passage of the debt deal as a protest. Roughly half of the 42 CBC members will likely end up voting in favor of the measure but only if their votes are needed at the very end of the voting period.
Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), a 40-year veteran of the House and a senior CBC member who plans to vote against the deal, took the House floor Monday afternoon to denounce the deal’s impact on the economy and the unemployed.
“If the Republicans would have had to hold the President hostage, I wish they would have held him hostage on the things my constituents wake up every morning thinking — how can I get a job, how can I get back my dignity?”