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Dan Pfeiffer

“The Republicans have provided a laundry list of essentially ransom demands of things that were essentially the Romney agenda that was rejected by voters that they know can’t pass in normal circumstances. They say give us these things or we will blow up the economy.

…We are for cutting spending. We’re for reforming our tax code. We’re for reforming our entitlements. What we’re not for is negotiating with people with a bomb strapped to their chest. We’re not going to do that.”

Chris Matthews 7

“In addition to their vow to blow up Obamacare and shut down the American government this September, they’re also moving to block an increase in the debt ceiling. That means the government wouldn’t be able to pay its bills, wouldn’t be able to pay its debts, would go into default. The consequences — it would destroy the United States credit rating, of course, and send us spiraling into default. This is Cruz’s operation here, by the way, and his allies’ operation. This is more than just obstructionism, this is political terrorism.

… I believe it’s terrorism.”

Barack Obama 5

“What I will not do is to have that negotiation with a gun at the head of the American people — the threat that “unless we get our way, unless you gut Medicare or Medicaid, or otherwise slash things that the American people don’t believe should be slashed, that we’re going to threaten to wreck the entire economy.”  That is not how historically this has been done.  That’s not how we’re going to do it this time.”

Robert Reich 2

“O can avoid debt-ceiling battle by (1) ignoring ceiling and letting Rs take it to Sup Ct, or (2) getting corp Am and Wall St. to force Rs.”

Chris Matthews 3

“What we saw [during the debt ceiling debate] — what I saw, at least, was one guy with a knife and the other trying to avoid being cut. It was a thug attacking a victim. It was a mugging.

…The bad news is the mugger got what he wanted — he got the wallet. I put to you the most important question of the week, of the month, of the year, of our time — is there any doubt that he, the mugger, will try it again? Not a whit.”

Ruth Marcus

Welcome to the new Washington normal: endless rounds of legislative carjacking.

Perhaps that’s unduly grim — pessimism fueled by the exhaustion of the moment. Perhaps, having peered into the abyss of political gridlock and economic collapse, those Republicans who pushed things to the brink this time will be chastened on the next round.

Perhaps, but I’m sticking with pessimism. One side wanted the car, had a gun and wasn’t afraid — certainly not afraid enough — to use it. The other had a child in the back seat.

Emanuel Cleaver

“This deal is a sugar-coated satan sandwich. If you lift the bun, you will not like what you see.”

Joe Biden

“[Republicans] have acted like terrorists.”