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Government Is Back, But What Comes Next?

The deal in Washington, and where it leaves us.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, walks with security after talking to reporters on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, in Washington. Sen. McConnell and his Democratic counterpart, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., are optimistic about forging an eleventh-hour bipartisan deal preventing a possible federal default and ending the partial government shutdown after Republican divisions forced GOP leaders to drop efforts to ram their own version through the House. (AP)

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, walks with security after talking to reporters on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, in Washington. Sen. McConnell and his Democratic counterpart, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., are optimistic about forging an eleventh-hour bipartisan deal preventing a possible federal default and ending the partial government shutdown after Republican divisions forced GOP leaders to drop efforts to ram their own version through the House. (AP)

It’s over.  The shutdown.  Default fever.  The Tea Party’s October assault on Obamacare.  As of late last night, all done.  Over.  Surrendered.  The immediate cost to the country of all the drama – $24 billion, we’re told.  The cost in global reputation — hard to say, hard to calculate, but out there.  Real.  The cost to American confidence in our own system of government to reasonably, responsibly work things out, find a common way — real too.  And the respite from the uproar may be short.  Up next On Point:  Washington’s fever, broken.  And what we’ve learned.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Molly Ball, staff writer covering national politics at The Atlantic. (@Mollyesque)

Roger Simon, chief political columnist for Politco. (@PoliticoRoger)

Greg Ip, U.S. Economics editor for The Economist. (@Greg_Ip)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Atlantic: Republicans Shut Down the Government For Nothing — “With a deal to reopen the government apparently imminent Wednesday, it’s worth taking stock of what it was all for—the two and a half weeks without a fully functioning federal government, the nonstop chaos on Capitol Hill, the tiptoeing to the brink of default. For Republicans, it was basically for nothing.”

The Economist: America’s Economy: Meh ceiling? –“The government is wasting the opportunity presented by dirt cheap borrowing costs to make valuable public investments and boost short- and long-term growth. If the government were dead set on slashing deficits there are vastly better ways of doing it than what has emerged through several years of disaster chicken. Foolish fiscal battles, and the Republicans’ daft and doomed attempt to short-circuit Obamacare, have had an enormous opportunity cost, in terms of the legislation that might have been passed—immigration reform, tax reform, and so on—but which has now been delayed by these antics and potentially sunk by the accumulation of bad blood.”

National Review: The Last Conference — “At the last GOP conference meeting of the two-week government shutdown, no lawmakers went to the microphones to give their take. Instead, after Speaker John Boehner told Republicans they had ‘fought the good fight,’ they all rose up to offer a standing ovation. ‘It was one of the easiest meetings we’ve ever had,’ says Representative Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina.”

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