When Barack Obama was a senator, he voted against raising the debt ceiling.
When Ronald Reagan was president, the Democratic-controlled Congress refused to raise the debt ceiling in 1985. The only reason that there wasn't a default was because the administration engaged in creative accounting that has since been made illegal.
Yet Joe Nocera and many many others complain that Tea Party is acting uniquely unreasonably. As Russ Roberts points out, the debt-ceiling deal will reduce spending over the next ten years from $46.1 trillion to $43.7 trillion, or just over 5%. "This year we're going to spend about $3.8 trillion. For further perspective, in the ten years between 2002 and 2011, the Federal government spent $28.1 trillion dollars." So the Tea Party is apparently terroristically evil, because it succeeded in insisting on reducing federal spending over the next ten years to a level 50% above the average 2002 - 2011 level. Sheesh.