At the current rate of federal spending, the national debt will crash through its legal $16.4 trillion limit by January 2013. When that happens, both sides of the aisle will be hoping to avoid a repeat of the hysterical debt ceiling showdown in the summer of 2011. The Democrats have not managed to pass a budget in years and do not have plans to reduce our mounting debt. Republicans generally wind up trying to weasel out of whatever spending cuts they agreed to before the ink on the deal has dried. In other words, writes Veronique de Rugy, get ready for the next round of ugly budget battles.