01.04.13 4:49 PM ET
The Debt Ceiling's Impact on the GOP
Debt-ceiling dilemma: In the short run, it enables Republicans in Congress to excite their base about entitlement reform that base doesn't really want. (After all, it's the over-65 Republican base that collects most entitlements.) In the long run, it hardens the image of the congressional GOP as a collection of desperadoes who can never safely be trusted with power.