House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) (upper left) leaves the Capitol Building with reporters in tow on October 15, 2013 in Washington, DC.
Andrew Burton/getty

First Read Flash: Entering the 11th hour

NBC’s Carrie Dann: “The nation is just hours away from a crucial deadline to avert default on its debts and Washington remains muddled in a risky legislative process that has the American people and the rest of the world holding its collective breath. After a furious day of Republican proposals ended with a thud and no House votes to advance a plan, lawmakers have even less time to approve a measure to increase the nation’s borrowing power and end a dragging government shutdown.”

MSNBC’s Suzy Khimm:Senate moderates are still working–and may be closing in on a deal. Speaker John Boehner’s attempt to get a bill through his conference fell apart Tuesday night, but Sen. Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine, and other senators from both parties kept trying to hash out a deal. ‘I would encourage people–my colleagues on both sides of the aisle of the Senate and the House–to take a look at the proposal that we’ve been working on,’ said Senator Collins. ‘I also think that the Senate needs to act first, that there’s more chance of an agreement being reached in the Senate, and we need to lead.’”

Washington Post: “Boehner struggled to accommodate his most vocal and hard-line members, adjusting his plan to address their concerns only hours after laying it out in a morning meeting with his caucus. But even after the rewrite, even after cajoling lawmakers in small groups — attempting to convince them that passing a Republican plan in the House would give the party more power to win concessions from Democrats than if they allowed the Senate to take the lead — there were still not enough votes to pass it.”

National Journal traces the GOP proposal’s defeat: “For House Republicans, a day that started with hymns of resurrection ended with bagpipes of burial.” Boehner “on Tuesday morning pitched his members on the GOP leadership’s latest—and perhaps final—plan to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government. But hours of internal debate, capped by a surprise external blow, left the proposal mortally wounded, and once again rendered House leadership incapable of corralling its rambunctious rank and file.”

New York Times, remarking on the GOP caucus beginning their day singing “Amazing Grace:” “While his colleagues sang about how what once was lost had now been found, Mr. Boehner did not tell them a more dispiriting truth: With less than 48 hours left before the nation is set to exhaust its authority to borrow money, he and his lieutenants were running out of ideas — a fact made starkly evident by the mad and fruitless scramble on Tuesday to come up with a measure that could win enough support from his members. Around 7 p.m., he sent the House home and canceled all votes for the day.”

Politico: “Whatever deal Senate leaders come up with to solve the fiscal crisis had better work, because President Barack Obama has no Plan B if it doesn’t….The latest episode in debt-limit roulette resembles a dystopian projection of the American form of democracy: a paralyzed House, a slow Senate, and an unbending president sit once again at the brink of a fiscal abyss.”

New York Times:The current fight is hardly over, yet the steady retreat of House Republicans since late last week, when they first proposed a short-term increase in the debt limit without policy strings, suggests that Mr. Obama’s big gamble could be paying off. It is a stand that was, and still is, fraught with risks if neither side backs down.”

The Wall Street Journal editorial board takes “House conservatives who have been all but running the House since this fiasco began” to task. “The Beltway budget melodrama rolls on to its predictable and dreary end, with both sides now split over increasingly small differences. None of this is worth a partial government shutdown, much less the risk of a debt default, and both sides are looking like losers. Let’s get it over with.”

Forbes:Is history about to repeat itself? As the government squabbles over the debt deal and raising the debt ceiling, the U.S. creditworthiness finds itself at risk of a credit downgrade. Late Tuesday afternoon, Fitch credit rating servic eannounced that it put the U.S. on credit rating watch negative because of government failure to raise the debt ceiling in a “timely” manner. The ratings service affirmed the U.S. credit rating at AAA — a rating that it retained in the face of the debt ceiling debate in 2011 — but the announcement puts the U.S. credit rating at risk for a downgrade.”

ALASKA: AP: “Former Natural Resources Commissioner and state Attorney General Dan Sullivan ended months of speculation Tuesday, officially announcing his bid for U.S. Senate. ‘I have dedicated my life to serving Alaska and America,’ he told a few dozen supporters, friends and others at his Anchorage announcement. ‘I love this state, and I have a passion for helping my fellow Alaskans.’ Sullivan is one of at least five Republicans, including Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller, who have announced plans to challenge first-term Democrat Mark Begich.”

CALIFORNIA: San Diego Union-Tribune: “Former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner’s professional and personal collapse continued on Tuesday as he pleaded guilty to three criminal charges that he grabbed and fondled women during his first and last spring at City Hall….The former 10-term congressman’s pleas came just one day before a criminal grand jury was set to hear evidence against him. As part of the plea deal with the state Attorney General’s Office, Filner will not face any jail or prison time.”

MASSACHUSETTS: Boston Globe: “State Senator Katherine M. Clark bested six Democratic rivals Tuesday, winning her party’s nomination in the race to succeed Edward J. Markey in the US House of Representatives and setting her on course to likely become the state’s newest member of Congress. Clark, a Melrose lawyer captured 31.6 percent of the vote. Middlesex County Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian and state Representative Carl M. Sciortino trailed with 22 percent and 16.1 percent, respectively. As the Democratic nominee in a liberal district north and west of Boston — one that voted by more than 30 percentage points for President Barack Obama over Mitt Romney last November — Clark is now the strong favorite going into the December general election. She will face Frank J. Addivinola Jr., the Republican nominee, who won the Republican primary Tuesday night.”

NEW JERSEY: PolitickerNJ: “Republican U.S. Senate candidate Steve Lonegan led an election eve rally at the green… vowing to defeat Newark Mayor Cory Booker in a resounding win for America and the ideas furnished by the country’s founding fathers. ‘The things we stand for are the values and principles of our ancestors, our neighbors, our friends, the people who go to work every day… going to the shooting ranges on Saturday, church on Sunday and work on Monday,’ said Lonegan, who staunchly backs the Tea Party-led shutdown of the federal government.”

NBC’S Jessica Taylor:The final gubernatorial debate between New Jersey Republican Gov. Chris Christie and Democratic state Sen. Barbara Buono didn’t lack for entertainment value, but probably won’t do anything to jeopardize an expected re-election landslide victory for the potential 2016 presidential candidate….Buono sought to tie Christie to Congressional Republicans, whose approval ratings have plummeted in the wake of the ongoing government shutdown.

VIRGINIA: Washington Post: “Virginia’s inspector general has found that a deputy in the office of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II improperly collaborated with energy companies in a legal dispute over natural gas royalties in southwest Virginia, according to a report released Tuesday….McAuliffe’s campaign has pummeled Cuccinelli for his office’s intervention on behalf of the energy companies while highlighting the campaign contributions he has received from the industry. Cuccinelli has maintained that he has done nothing wrong and took steps to correct the situation after his deputy’s actions came to light.”

AP: “Democrat Terry McAuliffe hauled in $6.2 million for his Virginia gubernatorial bid in September in a show of fundraising prowess that further widened a huge monetary advantage over Republican Ken Cuccinelli, who reported $3.4 million for the month.That left the former Democratic National Committee chairman and master fundraiser for the presidential bids of Bill and Hillary Clinton with $1.8 million in the bank on Sept. 30 even after withering advertising purchases as the campaign reached its fall fever pitch. Cuccinelli, by comparison, had $1 million on hand entering October.” 

 

First Read Flash: Entering the 11th hour