{{show_title_date || "How Washington could reach a deal on fiscal cliff in 24 hours, 12/2/12, 7:00 PM ET"}}

Steele: Norquist blocking progress on debt deal


How long would it take for House Speaker Boehner and the president to reach a deal if Grover Norquist and Tea Party Republicans in the House weren’t a factor?

“24 hours. About 24 hours,” Michael Steele, former RNC Chair and msnbc analyst, told Mike Barnicle Monday on Morning Joe.

Norquist, President of the Americans for Tax Reform and author of the anti-tax pledge, has been seemingly ubiquitous since the president’s re-election and talks on the fiscal cliff intensified.

Prominent backers or his no-tax pledge, including Sens. John McCain and Saxby Chambliss, have publicly stated that they would renounce the pledge if it meant reaching a deal.

Norquist chastised any GOP member considering “impure” tax hikes in order to get a deal done to avert the fiscal cliff on Meet the Press Sunday. He also warned that the “Tea party two is going to dwarf tea party one if Obama pushes us off the cliff.”

Despite Norquist’s dire warnings, Steele said that legislators could still reach a deal.

“About 80 percent of it is posturing…I think a lot of it is ‘let’s see how big yours is versus mine’ in terms of their plans…the reality of it is they’re going to wait to the last possible moment as they always do,” he said.