As expected, a debt ceiling deal has been reached between Democrats and Republicans. The plan will raise the debt ceiling by $2.4 trillion through the end of 2012 and calls for $2.4 trillion in deficit reduction. President Obama made the announcement at 8:40 p.m, "This will allow us to avoid default, allow us to pay our bills," but pointed out that the plan needs to get passed, "We are not done yet. I urge members to do the right thing and support this deal with your vote."
Obama called the process "messy" and admitted it had taken "too long." He said, "Is this the deal I would have preferred? No... Nevertheless, ultimately, the leaders of both parties have found their way toward compromise, and I want to thank them for that," and the deal will "begin to lift the cloud of uncertainty that hangs over our economy.”
According to the Washington Post, "It represents a victory for Obama, in that it would allow him to avoid another politically grueling and economically damaging debt-limit fight in the heat of the 2012 presidential campaign. However, Obama failed to secure other top priorities, including fresh measures to revive the flagging recovery and an end to tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy." On the other hand, Republicans "won severe cuts to agency budgets over the next decade and the prospect of deeper cuts to come, delivering on the campaign promises that helped them gain control of the House in last fall’s congressional elections. Democrats also agreed to stage a vote on a balanced-budget amendment, which has become a rallying point for tea-party-aligned conservatives."
Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California) said of the negotiations to the NY Times, "Sausage making is not pretty. But the sausage we have, I think, is a very different sausage from when we started." World markets have been watching and worrying over our debt ceiling crisis; the WSJ notes, "Asian markets opened sharply higher, with the Nikkei 225 in Japan up 165 points, or 1.68%, at 9 p.m. in Washington, shortly after the president announced a deal had been struck," but the ordeal has, per the Times, "eroded America’s already diminishing aura as the world’s economic haven and the sole country with the power to lead the rest of the world out of financial crisis and recession."
The WaPo's Chris Cilizza offers some more winners and losers—winners include the Tea Party, Obama, and, uh, David Wu: "Has a member of Congress forced to resign amid a sex scandal ever drawn less media attention? Somewhere, Anthony Weiner is grimacing." And some more details about the deal from CBS News—"About $1 trillion over 10 years would be cut now from the federal budget. In addition, a new special congressional committee made up of members from both parties and both houses of Congress would be tasked with coming up up with $1.8 trillion in cuts by Thanksgiving."