Howard Dean, Tim Pawlenty, Politico senior political "reporter" Maggie Haberman, and Todd Purdum from Vanity Fair in today's This Week roundtable with Jonathan Karl in the usual mix of Village conventional wisdom and occasional glimmers of reality -- mostly in the form of Howard Dean:
KARL: Look into the crystal ball here for the next couple of days. And we're going to get your predictions for next year, but just over the next couple of days, based on what you heard here today from the senators and then the raucous discussion with the House members, each of you, do you think that the deal is going to happen? And if it happens, is it going to pass House and Senate?
PAWLENTY: There will be a deal. I'm a little pessimistic, unfortunately, at the moment. I hope they could get over the cliff and avoid this January 1st cutoff, but if they do go over the cliff, my hope is that they can put something together as early as possible in January, but I'm a little pessimistic about whether they can get that done by December 31st midnight.
HABERMAN: I'm where the governor is. I mean, I think that the -- I understand that Schumer and Kyl are optimistic, but there's not much coming out of the House right now that seems positive. I do think there will be some framework.
DEAN: It's the best thing for the country to go over the cliff right now. It's not a great thing for...
KARL: But will we?
DEAN: Yeah. It's not a great thing for the country, but it's the best of all the alternatives.
PURDUM: Well, they'll have to do something, and the market's reaction on Wednesday morning, if they haven't done anything tomorrow, may be the next wedge that will...
DEAN: It will be, although I predict ultimately that if we go over the cliff and stay over the cliff, six months from now, the Dow will be at 15,000. You know why? The biggest uncertainty in the market is not taxes and blah, blah, blah.
KARL: Size of the deficit.
DEAN: It's the size of the deficit. If you go over the cliff, you've done something for the first time really serious about the deficit. All of a sudden, the financial horizons look pretty good.