Nobody forced him into Simpson-Bowles, he sought it out after the TeaPubliKlans walked on the preceding binding committee.
We beat back Junior's privatization scheme from the minority, without the White House. Forced my ass. The whole push was DOA and he keep reviving it and even managed the economy shrinking trigger after the last failure and claims he will keep pushing for a "grand bargain".
If you keep trying to do things some folks are going to believe you are trying to do them and there is no guarantee that those hoodwinked are those you set out to fool. The TeaPubliKlans haven't softened their positions, the media isn't playing off of it, it didn't endear independents, it didn't blunt corporate America or the Chamber of Commerce one iota. If it is an act then it is time for the hook and pull that failed turkey off the stage and run it out on a rail.
I'm convinced but no way I was the target audience, if it was an act, I firmly believe Obama is not only tolerant of some cuts but wants some. Not privatization, not to pull the rug out from under current retirees (though comfortable with starting to "bend the curve" now by arresting payouts), but because he actually believes that some modifications are required because he surrounds himself with neoliberal figures that believe in a similar vein and HE KEEPS TRYING and pushing the issue in an environment where the more sensible changes to generate more revenue are impossible.
If he actually wanted to raise the cap then such a proposal should have come to committee and then to the floor in the first two years rather than going through supporting a binding deficit commission and then Simpson-Bowles.