What do you call a budget deal that spends $63 Billion of “settled law” called the sequester? I call it a Republican surrender. Never mind that since the sequester began, the Obama administration has claimed some economic recovery. And never mind that the sequester passed with bi-partisan support.
For un-sequestering $63 Billion dollars today and for the next eighteen months, the deal promises reductions totaling $85 Billion elsewhere. But that’s not for today or the next two years. That’s for the next ten years. Who in their right mind believes this will happen?
But that’s not even the most insane talking point the House and Senate Republican leadership is touting. They use buzz words like “specific deficit-reduction provisions” and “mandatory savings” and “non-tax revenue” that makes up this fictitious $85 Billion number. And “if you’re for deficit reduction, you’re for this agreement.” The snake oil they’re selling is that this agreement would cut the deficit by between $20 and $23 Billion, as if that actually means something. They call it “a step in the right direction.” It’s surrender. It’s means nothing more than trying to look relevant in standing up to Democrats for the sake of getting something done. It’s not going to stop demagoguery from Democrats. It’s not much more than moving the deck chairs around on the Titanic.
With a national debt of $17 Trillion, $23 Billion is like a mouse fart in a hurricane. There’s no serious attempt, not even the slightest attempt, to deal with the debt and deficit spending whatsoever. It’s like driving over the cliff at 60 miles per hour instead of 65.
Speaker Boehner is hoping to win something by playing defense with the Democrats. Mr. Speaker, you don’t win anything by playing defense. What Speaker Boehner is doing is effectively managing the decline of the Republican party. He’s doing it in two ways. By budget deals like this, which will rise its head again in time for the 2016 general election when he’ll once again cower to the demagoguery of the Left. And by attacking republicans in the House and throughout the country. Republicans who want to see real evidence of getting to a balanced budget, which necessarily means working toward not spending more than we take in, (to quote President Obama) PERIOD. I recall that that’s what they were elected and sent to Washington to do. And he can start by putting an end to the insane “baseline budgeting” scheme. If you and I can’t use baseline budgeting, what on earth makes any sane person think that the government should? They should be forced to justify every dollar of their budget before it is allocated.
This budget deal dodges a bullet. To win seats, Speaker Boehner needs to go on offense and shoot one of his own. He needs to carry a republican platform instead of a democrat-lite platform. He needs to talk about bold tax reform like the FairTax. Something that eliminates the current, punitive IRS tax code. He needs to talk up health care reform like H.R.2300, the private-sector solution. And what better time to do that? And he needs to talk about how unleashing the economic engine of the country, achieving true energy independence, creating jobs, and putting people back to work again will turn this ship around. That’s what the American people want. And that’s something that, so far, only Republicans have a chance at delivering. Problem is, I’m not so sure Speaker Boehner has what it takes to get us there.