The simplistic, if understandable, answer to that question for many conservatives is right now. The national debt has surpassed our GDP, we're borrowing 40 cents of every dollar we spend, and our unpaid-for federal obligations already exceed $80 trillion. We're in dire straits; there's no escaping that. But there's also no escaping certain political realities: The public isn't feeling especially charitable toward Congressional Republicans these days, Democrats control 55 Senate seats, and this president will occupy the Oval Office for the next four years. If the GOP is seeking to apply pressure on the Left to improve our...
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Many true-blue conservatives with really good ideological views have no concept of political strategy. Ideology is important, but it does no good if you can't make those views popular among the electorate. Being right is not enough; we must also be convincing to the majority of the electorate. Democrats have been very good at that for while now, partly because they don't hesitate to lie. The press supports most of their lies without question, creating another hurdle for conservatives. In that context, Republicans should pass a clean debt ceiling increase. It doesn't have to be as big as Obama wants, but it must be clean.
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