Gridlock Isn’t Forever

Douthat warns both parties:

The idea that the G.O.P.’s House majority is so secure that perpetual brinksmanship (today debt ceiling threats, tomorrow a government shutdown, rinse and repeat) carries no political costs has seduced some Republicans, but it’s quite likely wrong, and the idea that the Obama majority can be recreated easily enough in 2016 by a lesser political talent absent much stronger economic growth isn’t any more self-evident. Demographics and district lines are powerful, but so long as public satisfaction with the country’s direction remains twenty points below its Reagan-era levels, it seems wiser to bet on further upheaval than to expect the status quo.