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The Agenda

NRO’s domestic-policy blog, by Reihan Salam.

Back from the Brink(ish)



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Congressional Republicans have semi-gotten their act together by embracing something very close to the Keith Hennessey strategy on the debt limit. Hennessey explains how the latest move from the House GOP might shape the broader fiscal policy debate:

By forcing/encouraging/persuading Senate Democrats to do a budget resolution, this debt limit bill levels the playing field for future fiscal policy debates. House Republicans who have had to defend their proposed spending cuts will now be able to contrast those at-times painful policy choices with whatever alternatives Senate Democrats propose. This will clarify the fiscal policy choices and make the debate one that is simultaneously both more honest and less unfair to spending cutters.

What I’ve found interesting is that the most vociferous critics of House Republicans on the debt limit have generally failed to praise this strategic shift, despite the fact that, as Hennessey explains, it will help move us towards reestablishing the normal budget process.

Donald Marron has provided more detail on the core provisions of the House debt limit bill and how it is likely to work.



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