Ducking out of the closed-door meeting of Democrats to attend another event, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas said that Vice President Joe Biden had made a pitch based on "historical perspective."
He explained that he had taken a central role in the final deal because, as president of the Senate and a former long-time member there, he was in the best position to deal with GOP Sen. Mitch McConnell -- and President Barack Obama had realized that and asked the Veep to take the lead.
Biden went through the long history of GOP refusals to vote for income-tax rate hikes -- a history that goes back to 1993, long before the Tea Party was a gleam in Grover Norquist's eye. Lee agreed that it was a victory of sorts for the president to get the Republicans to move on that issue, however modestly.
Biden, according to Lee, also stressed that the debt "crisis" was largely of the GOP's making because of profligate spending in the Bush II Years. If the Democrats now have to agree to spending cuts, it will be up to the GOP to offer up its pet categories of spending -- defense in particular -- for new limits.
Lee, a staunch liberal, said that she was undecided about how to vote -- out of concern that the deal would lead to a "hostage taking" two months from now when spending cuts are negotiated in the midst of another manufactured "crisis" -- the one over raising the debt ceiling. She said that she was concerned that a latter deal would include restrictive changes in how cost-of-living adjustments are calculated for Social Security; and that it would cut programs such as funding for housing and homeless shelters.
"I haven't decided -- but I am listening," she said.
Lee is apparently worried that Biden might have made promises to McConnell on those items.
Earlier on HuffPost:
"Oops!...I Did It Again" (Britney Spears)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/23/a-big-fucking-deal-bidens_n_509927.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(May 23, 2010) --</strong></a> As President Barack Obama prepared to announce the passage of his landmark health care legislation, Vice President Joe Biden had a memorable slip of the tongue, dropping an F-bomb on live television. "This is a big f*ck*ng deal," he said. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
"Cleanin' Out My Closet" (Eminem)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/03/28/biden-team-apologizes-to-scott-powers-closet_n_841313.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(March 28, 2011) --</strong></a> A journalist covering Biden's appearance at a Florida fundraiser found himself in a sticky spot. The vice president's communications staff kept <em>Orlando sentinel</em> reporter Scott Powers in a closet prior to Biden's speech for Bill Nelson. The VP's team offered its "sincere apologies" to Powers "for the lack of a better hold room." (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
"Sleeping With The Television On" (Billy Joel)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/04/13/joe-biden-sleeping-asleep_n_848862.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(April 13, 2011) -- </strong></a> Was Biden catching some z's? Cameras appeared to catch the vice president dozing during President Obama's speech at George Washington University.
"Save Me, San Francisco" (Train)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/19/joe-biden-giants-super-bowl-san-francisco_n_1216101.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(Jan. 19, 2012) --</strong></a> During a speech in San Francisco, Biden made an embarrassing error with the city's sports teams. In advance of the 49ers' NFC Championship game with the New York Giants, Biden said: "The Giants [are] on their way to the Super Bowl." His confusion possibly stemmed from the fact that the San Francisco's Major League baseball team is also called the Giants. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
"Thanks For The Memories" (Fall Out Boy)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/28/joe-biden-mitt-romney-jobs_n_1385906.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(March 28, 2012) --</strong></a> While campaigning in Iowa, Biden blasted GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney's record on jobs. He charged that Romney is "consistently wrong" on manufacturing, pointing to a photo album factory that closed under Bain Capital's watch. "Mitt, thanks for the memories," Biden quipped. (Photo by Andrea Melendez-Pool/Getty Images)
"Say My Name" (Destiny's Child)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/28/biden-dr-pepper_n_1385982.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(March 28, 2012) --</strong></a> On another Iowa campaign stop, Biden flubbed the name of a local school leader, referring to Scott Community College President Dr. Theresa Paper as "Dr. Pepper." (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
"Feeling Good" (Michael Bublé)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/06/vice-president-biden-gay-marriage_n_1489235.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(May 6, 2012) --</strong></a> In an interview with NBC's "Meet The Press," Biden announced his support for gay marriage. "I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties," he said.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/10/joe-biden-gay-marriage-apology_n_1507939.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(May 10, 2012) --</strong></a> Immediately before Obama revealed his own support for <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/09/obama-gay-marriage_n_1503245.html" target="_hplink">gay marriage</a>, Biden apologized to the president for making his announcement ahead of the president's moment. The AP reported that the duo met in the Oval Office, where Obama accepted Biden's apology, knowing that the VP was speaking from his heart. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
"Feel Like Makin' Love" (Bad Company)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/14/joe-biden-chains-remark_n_1776463.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(July 11, 2012) --</strong></a> At the National Council of La Raza's annual conference, Biden turned heads with a sex joke surrounding his home life growing up. "By the way -- having your grandpop living with you, having your great aunt, your uncle, for real," Biden remarked. "Those walls were awful thin. I wonder how the hell my parents did it. But that's a different story." (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
"The Chain" (Fleetwood Mac)
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/14/joe-biden-chains-remark_n_1776463.html" target="_hplink"><strong>(August 14, 2012) --</strong></a> At a campaign rally in Virginia, Biden accused Romney of looking to loosen regulations on Wall Street. "They're going to put y'all back in chains," Biden told the crowd, turning heads. Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul said the comment was "not acceptable in our political discourse," while Maryland Gov. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/19/martin-omalley-joe-biden-chains_n_1806604.html" target="_hplink">Martin O'Malley</a> added that it was an "indelicate choice of words."