The Dems are correct in stating that the debt ceiling needs to be increased to cover spending Congress has already authorized. So, Republicans need to attack the spending authorizations -- appropriations. Before the continuing resolution (an abomination in itself) expires, the House needs to pass several smaller continuing resolutions or appropriations bills, each covering a portion of the government. That gives Republicans much more control over how much is spent on what. It also makes it clear who is irresponsible, the Senate.