Reuters now reports that Obama directly told his Republican foes:

I have reached the point where I say enough,” Obama said, according to the [Republican] aide. “Would Ronald Reagan be sitting here? I’ve reached my limit. This may bring my presidency down, but I will not yield on this.”

When someone prefers (political) death to capitulation, her opponent can also choose death or can capitulate.

If only he was on the side of the “lesser people.”

Update

Martin Wolf assesses here the stakes present in the current situation:

These are dangerous times. The US may be on the verge of making among the biggest and least-necessary financial mistakes in world history. The eurozone might be on the verge of a fiscal cum financial crisis that destroys not just the solvency of important countries but even the currency union and, at worst, much of the European project. These times require wisdom and courage among those in charge of our affairs. In the US, utopians of the right are seeking to smash the state that emerged from the 1930s and the second world war. In Europe, politicians are dealing with the legacy of a utopian project which requires a degree of solidarity that their peoples do not feel. How will these clashes between utopia and reality end? In late August, when I return from my break, we may know at least some of the answers.

Wolf’s stated position would commit him to identifying the maximalist Obama as a Right Utopian!