Battle Lines

House GOP Lists Debt-Ceiling Demands

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Republican members of the House of Representatives rally after passing a bill that would prevent a government shutdown while crippling the health care law that was the signature accomplishment of President Barack Obama's first term in Washington on Sept. 20, 2013.

The shutdown is looking a little more likely. As Washington heads toward cataclysmic events if Congress doesn’t vote to increase the federal debt ceiling, House GOP leaders on Thursday presented their demands: a one-year delay of Obamacare, authority to overhaul the tax code, construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, a block on new EPA regulations of greenhouse-gas production, and more. The implausible laundry list was intended to raise the stakes against the Democratic Senate, where it has no chance of passing, and President Obama, who said he will not negotiate on funding the government. House Speaker John Boehner said he would not vote on a stopgap spending bill if Republican priorities are ignored. “I do not see that happening,” he said.