"We've reached a point where there are no hard deadlines until the debt ceiling," says Bob Bixby, executive director of the Concord Coalition.
"That can be good or bad. Good in the sense that deadlines we faced over the past couple of years have not been helpful in reaching an agreement. Bad in the sense that when you take the pressure off, policymakers don't always use this quieter time productively. Our political system seems to respond to crises and hard deadlines," he adds.