Lawmakers Abandon Debt Talks

Congress failed to release a plan in time for the opening of Asian markets Sunday evening. In an appearance on Fox News Sunday, House Speaker John Boehner said that the GOP is ready to act alone if no bipartisan plan can be reached. Both Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are preparing separate backup plans. Reid's would raise the debt ceiling by $2.4 trillion through 2012 with $2.5 trillion in spending cuts, affecting some of the largest entitlement programs. Boehner's plan is less clear, but is predicted to be a two-parter: The first step would be a temporary raise in the debt ceiling with $1 trillion in cuts, followed by future cuts crafted by a new legislative commission. “The preferable path would be a bipartisan plan that involves all the leaders, but it is too early to decide whether that’s possible,” Boehner remarked on his Fox appearance. “If that’s not possible, I and my Republican colleagues in the House are prepared to move on our own.”