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Happy Friday! Here’s what we see out there today:

Why are Republicans playing chicken with the debt ceiling? As Paul Krugman points out, raising the ceiling has been little more than a formality in recent history – in fact, under George W. Bush the ceiling was raised seven times. So what’s changed? Hmm… a Democratic president? An ideologically-driven Republican party that wants to extort political concessions over every vote in Congress? As we said yesterday, it sure looks like Republican leaders want to tank the economy for their own political gains. What should President Obama do to beat back this challenge? http://nyti.ms/iZiPaJ

 

By the way, Tim Geithner’s staying at Treasury… for now. http://nyti.ms/l8zngE

 

Government Shutdown Alert: Minnesota is shutting down its state government after a budget impasse between a Republican state legislature and Democratic governor Mark Dayton. And the shutdown is helping former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, who left behind a huge budget deficit when he left office. http://nyti.ms/kfusnj http://politi.co/jYCWkO

 

The case against former IMF head Dominique Strauss Kahn is on the verge of collapse as investigators have found reason to doubt the credibility of his accuser. http://nyti.ms/igFBHP

 

What’s wrong with Mitt? The Republican Presidential field has added its seventh candidate not named Romney. Say hello to Thad McCotter. The five-term Michigan congressman is in the race and he’s been very critical of Mitt Romney in the past. http://bit.ly/mdv8Fp

 

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Hardball - Let Me Start

Let Me Start...

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