The American people have lately been asking, apropos the debt ceiling deadlock, why can’t Washington politicians set aside their ideological differences and come together for the common good? American people, with all due respect, this is not the right question. The right question is some version of: Have the Republicans lost their minds? When did they lose all interest in responsible governance? When did negotiating come to mean one side getting everything and the other side none of what they want? While we ponder these mysteries, here’s Charlie Cook at National Journal: “Democrats hate entitlement cuts just as much as Republicans despise tax hikes. Likewise, just as Republicans dislike defense cuts, Democrats dislike domestic spending cuts. Yet, both are necessary. If Republicans expect Democrats to go along with entitlement cuts, the GOP has to be willing to go along with some revenue increases. If Republicans expect Democrats to swallow deep hits to domestic spending, the GOP has to swallow deep hits to defense. Instead, the Republicans’ position seems to be that they should be allowed to stand on their principles while Democrats are required to compromise theirs.” This is bad news for a debt-ceiling deal and bad news for the country. It’s also, probably, a disaster for Republicans: if they insist on standing in the way of an agreement, they’re going to get the blame.
• ‘Blame Republicans for Debt Crisis’ [Charlie Cook, National Journal]