Two things: I don't like pay-go as a concept, as it does hamper good government and is a "conservative" idea with little empirical basis; but I do understand the political strategy. Pelosi will be Speaker for two years. She wants to make sure that all proposed legislation is "workable" - and that includes being resistant to conservative attacks. In another thread I suggested that the Democrats push responsible, "good government" legislation, early and often. Pay-go, as a strategy, does that. Realistically, Democrats are not going to get any legislation through that doesn't pay for itself. Also, realistically, in two years, if the Senate and White House change hands, the rule will change, too. By then, I expect, we'll have a new Speaker. She'll need to be able to explain the new rule.