We think we’re fighting about the deficit, when in reality the deep philosophical and political divide in America is mostly about the relative sizes of government versus the private sector.Nothing literally dishonest about that...but it's a way of framing the issue that solidly downplays the importance of the deficit, and allows deficit-busting Republicans to think of themselves as "fiscally conservative" no matter how large they want the deficit to be. That is, it's a very small step from where Hennessey is to "deficits don't matter." After all, Hennessey says, "Almost all elected officials of both parties will tell you (and believe) that deficits are bad." Well, he's right that they'll all tell you that, and it's even possible that they all believe it, but the truth for the last thirty years or more has been that most of the ones with the big "R" next to their names have supported policies that yield large deficits, while most of the ones with the big "D" next to their names have supported policies that reduce or close those deficits.
Hennessey understands the budget process -- and GOP budget rhetoric -- as well as anyone, so he's a good source for these things.