I’ve been listening to Rush for two days slamming the budget deal, hoping that this would be the 3.2% of the time he was wrong.
But no. It appears that Boehner’s negotiating prowess is not all that it was cracked up to be.
Via Hot Air: Analysis: Budget deal only reduces real discretionary spending by around $15 billion:
See this AP piece for the grim details. Quote: “[T]he cuts that actually will make it into law are far tamer, including cuts to earmarks, unspent census money, leftover federal construction funding, and $2.5 billion from the most recent renewal of highway programs that can’t be spent because of restrictions set by other legislation.” Another $4.9 billion comes from a Crime Victims Fund that wasn’t going to be spent this year anyway.
The specifics show that finding nearly $40 billion in cuts during the 2011 fiscal year required clever accounting and, for the White House, a willingness to concede on rhetoric to find gains on substance.
For example, the final cuts in the deal are advertised as $38.5 billion less than was appropriated in 2010, but after removing rescissions, cuts to reserve funds and reductions in mandatory spending programs, discretionary spending will be reduced only by $14.7 billion.
The overall spending baseline for the year will still end up being $773 billion higher than it was in 2008, before TARP was enacted and our Keynesian adventures began. (Even the deepest cuts demanded by Republicans didn’t imagine a return to that level this year.) The bill does eliminate four of Obama’s czars, as Ed noted this morning — but those positions were already being phased out.
(Not Kevin Jennings, by the way).
John Podhoretz surveys the scene and wonders if freshmen Republicans won’t be so angry at the specifics of the deal that we’ll end up with a shutdown after all. The short-term resolution that they passed on Friday night expires this Thursday, so if the initial vote fails in the House on Thursday morning, that could spell the end.
Ace says: Suckers: We Were Fooled; Budget Barely Cuts Anything
As Rand Paul said — and I didn’t think he was right when I first heard this, but he was, in fact right — we’ll actually spend more in 2011 then in 2010.
This is a “cut”? In what sense?
This is absolutely horrible. You know what we’ve got? Another stimulus, but a covert one.
And apparently it’s a stimulus that’s baked in the cake and will keep getting spent year after year forever.
I heard Rand Paul tell Hannity on his show, this afternoon that he would try to filibuster the bill in the Senate.
The Hill has the story:
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that he’s considering a filibuster of the budget agreement to fund the government for the remainder of this fiscal year.
Paul, who said yesterday that he would vote against the agreement reached last Friday to cut $39.9 billion between now and September, acknowledged that he’s considering waging a filibuster, which would make it so that leaders need 60 votes to pass the deal and advance it to President Obama’s desk.
“Yes, but we haven’t really made a final decision on that yet,” Paul said on conservative talker Sean Hannity’s radio show.
A filibuster would make it difficult for the Senate to pass the budget deal by midnight Friday, when the government’s funding will run out.
Paul acknowledged that even if he were to filibuster, it’s unlikely that he’ll attract 40 other senators’ votes in order to sustain his procedural roadblock to the budget deal.
(FT) – The US lacks a “credible strategy” to stabilise its mounting public debt posing a small but significant risk of a new global economic crisis, says the International Monetary Fund.
In an unusually stern rebuke to its largest shareholder, the IMF said the US was the only advanced economy to be increasing its underlying budget deficit in 2011 at a time when its economy was growing fast enough to reduce borrowing.
To meet the 2010 pledge by the Group of 20 countries for all advanced economies – except Japan – to halve their deficits by 2013, the US would need to implement tougher austerity measures than in any two-year period since records began in 1960, the IMF said. In its twice-yearly Fiscal Monitor, the IMF added that on its current plans the US would join Japan as the only country with rising public debt in 2016, creating a risk for the global economy.
Doug Ross is calling for a new Speaker.