There is great disagreement in Washington over the meaning of last year’s midterm elections, but it’s almost certain that most Americans did not vote for the kind of paralysis that now surrounds the negotiations over the terms of raising the debt ceiling.
Americans voted for, or got, divided government because the public doesn’t fully trust either party with the reins of power. That means the only way out of this problem is through compromise, or what one administration official called “bipartisanship by necessity,” not by choice.
Up until now, enough lawmakers haven’t been ready to accept that in order for a deal to be struck. So the clock ticks.