I'm basically in agreement with William Jacobson's take on the debt limit's politics:
Simply put, anything which increases Obama’s chances of reelection will more than offset any additional cuts to be gained beyond the Boehner plan. That plan is far from perfect, and doesn’t go far enough, but think how far we have come in just a few months since Obama proposed a budget which was so outrageous in its spending and deficits that not a single member of the Senate from either party voted for it.
Our Obama problem far exceeds our spending problem. The Boehner Plan keeps that Obama problem front and center for the next year, when Obama would rather be talking fluff and hope and change and playing class warfare.
All I ask of you and myself is that as Boehner reworks his plan in light of CBO scoring, keep in mind the end game. We simply cannot afford 4 more years.
And with the WSJ's analysis of the problem:
Senator Jim DeMint put out a statement raking the Speaker for seeking "a better political debt deal, instead of a debt solution" (emphasis, needless to say, his). The usually sensible Club for Growth and Heritage Action, the political arm of the Heritage Foundation, are scoring a vote for the Boehner plan as negative on similar grounds.
But what none of these critics have is an alternative strategy for achieving anything nearly as fiscally or politically beneficial as Mr. Boehner's plan. The idea seems to be that if the House GOP refuses to raise the debt ceiling, a default crisis or gradual government shutdown will ensue, and the public will turn en masse against . . . Barack Obama. The Republican House that failed to raise the debt ceiling would somehow escape all blame. Then Democrats would have no choice but to pass a balanced-budget amendment and reform entitlements, and the tea-party Hobbits could return to Middle Earth having defeated Mordor.
The basic trouble, as I see it, is that Obama and the Democrats don't really want to contrain spending--Harry Reid's "plan," which no one's seen-- is supposedly full of tricks like counting the money saved from winding down the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, which is not a "cut" in any meaningful sense AND that the House GOP is full of ideologues who hold asinine beliefs like that they can really get a balanced budget to the states through this Congress. And don't dare call the House GOP conservatives. ideologues are the antithesis of conservatives, as Russell Kirk long ago pointed out;
Conservatism, I repeat, is not an ideology. It does not breed fanatics. It does not try to excite the enthusiasm of a secular religion. If you want men who will sacrifice their past and present and future to a set of abstract ideas, you must go to Communism, or Fascism, or Benthamism.
But if you want men who seek, reasonably and prudently, to reconcile the best in the wisdom of our ancestors with the change which is essential to a vigorous civil social existence, then you will do well to turn to conservative principles.
Fanatics. Enthusiasts. Populists. Imprudent men and women. These are not conservatives.