Washington policy debates are primarily about being admitted to the club of participants rather than about logic and evidence. Until the public understands this fact, there is little chance that the vast majority of people will have much ability to influence the course of policy.
The budget deficit is the current obsession in Washington. You can get big bucks spinning scare stories of huge budget deficits that will bankrupt the government and sink the economy. However, the indisputable reality is that the large budget deficits of recent years are due to the economic downturn following the collapse of the housing bubble.