This whole thing is missing the forest for the trees. First, you're really underestimating the incentives for too many GOP House members to go full scorched earth. My one (and let me emphasize one) reason I think a deal happens is the acute personal financial self interest of enough GOP House members (most own significant amount of stock. In addition, I'm guessing there enough donors calling House members as they hang out on the front lawn yelling at them to not screw this up*). But I think you're also underestimating the number of House members who are "true believers" that this all hyped "lamestream media" "fake news".

But the much important thing is this debt ceiling shouldn't exist in the first place and it was dumb dumb dumb of Democrats to note get rid of it when they had a Trifecta. There is no Swing voter, none**, who is switching their vote in 2024 because the debt ceiling was eliminated. The only way the debt ceiling effects the vote of a Swing voter is if we did actually breach the ceiling or came close enough that the full faith and credit of the US government was somehow in danger. Given the economic calamity that could happen in that scenario, it's Democrats who would suffer.

*this is a reference to the supposed story of the GOP House member who got a call from a big donor basically saying just pass the tax cut, thereby sort of proving out the idea that the only thing GOP actually cares about in practice is lowering taxes for the wealthiest Americans.

** I'm sure New York Times can find that rando person saying "I was a life long Democrat, but then they eliminated the debt ceiling". Please google that random person's name and then see what organization they're actually representing.

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Lowering the rate if increase doesn't serve the need of getting the national debt under control.

Balancing the budget in 10 years does nothing to reduce the national debt.

As a matter of fact it continues to increase during those 10 years.

At some point that debt is going to be a major problem for the world.

Whether you blame republicans for lowering taxes or democrats for increasing spending the reality is those both are increasing the debt.

As a a country we should be doing the exact option on both.

Real cuts (not.just lowering the rate of increase) and increase taxes only to pay down the debt.

I know that is never going to happen and sadly we are just leaving our children with a nasty pile of goo to figure out.

That or the world markets will react to our default or devaluing the $$$.

Check the CBO analysis for the next 30 years if we do nothing.

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What's particularly frustrating about this is how much of the discussion acts as if the federal budget is the same as a household budget. Further, those legislators who intentionally make that comparison (by saying things like "this president couldn't be trusted to run your family's budget; look how much debt he's run up!") are either too ill-informed to even be allowed to vote on this topic or are simply arguing in bad faith in order to stir up voters who don't realize how categorically different this is from balancing a personal budget.

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I still remain furious at Boehner and Obama not getting the grand bargain done in 2011. We’ve been on a trajectory to debt hell since 2004 and that’s been the only glimmer of hope to get off the train. And of course Donald Trump crushed any plausible credibility and interest in taking the budget seriously on the Republicans side for the for the foreseeable future. I was hoping the inevitable push-pull of politics would make fiscal responsibility crop up on the Democratic side. But unfortunately it hasn’t.

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I really hate this kind of reasonable, practical-minded approach to the issue of managing the debt limit.

It's like sighing in relief when a hostage situation is resolved because both sides got what they wanted: the kidnappers got their money and the parents got back their child, well, minus a finger and an ear. So it's all good!

The basic logic of the debt ceiling standoff is that the Democrats really care about the effects of breaching it -- because of a global depression -- and the Republicans don't give a fig and would be just as happy to see it broached with the resulting financial crisis. They'll only grudgingly agree to avert economic catastrophe if they can be bribed enough.*

It's very important that the Republicans can't be seen as winning anything. First because that's morally odious. Second, because they'll just do it again. So the Democrats *have* to win.

* It's actually worse if this is wrong and the Republicans actually do care about averting global catastrophe. That means they don't have the strength of their convictions and they're just playing a game to try to get some goodies but in order to do so they are playing with extremely dangerous fire, with no certainty that they will be able to gracefully back down at the last minute and do what's in their hearts.

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The Republican hardliners think they can obstruct any deal by virtue of their positions on the rules committee + low threshold to vacate the chair. Do those operational issues influence your view of the risks involved here? I don’t really know how those things work. When a deal is struck can those impediments be steam rolled?

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