I generally support proposals like this:
With Congress heading into a politically perilous budget season, influential House conservatives plan this week to propose an austere alternative spending plan that would pare more than $650 billion over five years, balance the budget and drastically shrink three cabinet agencies.
The legislation, part of a push by some Republicans to re-establish themselves as champions of fiscal restraint, was taking shape as President Bush struck a similar theme on Monday by asking Congress to grant him line-item veto power to eliminate federal spending that he might judge wasteful.
“We can’t be all things to all people when it comes to spending the taxpayers’ money,” Mr. Bush said at a ceremony installing a new chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.
But House conservative leaders would go far beyond the president’s own budget proposal, illustrating the difficulty the White House and the Republican leadership have had in persuading the caucus to speak with one voice on the matter.
Wanna get my support? Include a bill killing the disastrous prescription drug pill plan, and ease up on the other medicare cuts, which will be politically devastating.
I shall commence holding my breath. Heh.
Are these “House conservative leaders” opposed to making Bush’s tax cuts permanent? Because if they’re not, and you know they’re not, then they’re not proposing to balance the budget.
I wonder what those 3 cabinet agencies will be?
If they are Education, Health and Human Services, and Housing and Urban Development, I might scream. Unless it is the previously mentioned prescription drug give-away. Get rid of that.
HAHA! I would wager anything that the actual plan would increase spending, add to the debt, and drastically increase three cabinat agencies, if not add another to perform additional “oversight”.
More than just politically devastating to many many Americans.
But the type of cuts to expect from this new “fiscally constrained” crowd.
How about starting with the 40 billion or so in tax credits to oil producers? It’s not like they are barely scraping by these days.
Nah… Cut the medicare. Granny is just a welfare queen anyway.
Are there any hard details out on this five year ‘plan’? Or is it like Bush’s plan to not really cut the deficit in half once he’s no longer in office…
Education, Commerce, and Energy. At least they say that much in the article.
Smoke, meet the american publics ass.
The Other Steve
Sigh… The old Line Item Veto trick. Didn’t the SCOTUS strike that down once already?
Why yes it was:
Do Republicans have any new ideas, or are they going to keep rehashing the old ones?
Similarly on spending.
You got two choices at this point to make substantial impact to the budget:
Reduce military spending(i.e. get out of Iraq and save $150 billion a year)
Which one do you want? Because everything else the Republicans talk about is nickled and dime shit that’ll never make a dent on a $400 billion deficit.
The Other Steve
Just for the record…
The fact that Bush brought up line item veto means he’s not serious about this.
Thanks PB –
1 out of 3 still makes me scream. Education is my all time favorite ever. :)
Spending cuts and line item vetos – GOP style!: cut programs that aid the poor (like LIHEAP) and others in need. Match these with proposals that benefit big business and spend like drunken sailors on military projects (like more expensive fighter jets – I had no idea Osama had an air force!!!).
Sounds like a winning strategy!
I think they’re more worried about Grandpa being a welfare queen.
Oddly enough, it’s one of Bush’s favorites too. Except for the part where he didn’t sufficiently fund it to keep up with his horribly ill-thought-out ‘reforms’.
Tom DeLay is being Scootered, neutered and Roto-Rootered, Abramoff’s out of commission, Ralph Reed’s cover is blown, the heat’s on in Ohio — and you expect Bush to open himself to charges by a major part of his corporate base that he’s an Indian giver? Don’t hold your breath.
Big Medicare cuts are a manifestation of a right-wing cause celebre: teaching Americans the federal government can’t be trusted to meet nonwealthy individuals’ needs by honoring commitments scornfully referred to as entitlement programs. (Better that people should depend on corporate benevolence, as exemplified by Wal-Mart’s health care cost-shifting strategy.) Again, it’s not going to happen.
If the Abramoff scandal proved anything, it’s that the Republican Party is definitely not a bunch of Indian givers.
Welcome to planet earth o space traveler. I see you have only been here a short time.
This is a much better idea than the line-item veto, which just gives the President carte blanche to blackmail the opposition party.
The annual deficit runs into the hundreds of billions, so $650 billion over five years is not going to balance the budget.
The article says there will be $350 billion cut from Medicare, Medicaid, and other social programs. No specifics as to the cuts (surprise). Then there will be $300 billion saved “through a major reorganization of the Education, Commerce and Energy Departments.” Sure. Sounds like our old friends “waste, fraud and abuse.”
Come on, John. What are you supporting? They haven’t said and you don’t know. This is strictly a PR stunt to cover massive Republican fiscal irresponsibility. Don’t fall for it.
When specific realistically measured cuts are proposed it will be time to evaluate them. Until then this is nonsense.
Funny how the Bush Administration has found so many places to save a few bucks, but never bothers to mention them until an hour before they push the paperwork through.
Perhaps we could pass legislation against that.
I was against the line-item veto in ’96, and I’m against it now. If the President is unwilling to veto a spending bill and Congress is unwilling to trim a bill so be it. If Bush was a real conservative, he’d veto the next big spending item that comes down the line. If Republicans were really conservatives, they’d be trimming better than barbers.
Dept. of Energy?
Excuse me, but isn’t this sorta like Bush’s “great support for alternative energy” and then we discovered that NREL was getting its budget axed?
Some of the work getting done under the DOE is probably our best chance to get off the fossil fuel kick.
If we got rid of those tax breaks for the oil companies how much DOE support could we provide?
Y’know, I wonder if Bush et al. are in cahoots with (the Illuminati, the Masons, the pick-your-random-rule-the-world-conspiracy) to deliberately leave the U.S. a dry husk of a wrecked economy with no technology base and no future. Because he’s certainly ACTING like it.
If Bush was a real conservative, he’d veto the next big spending item that comes down the line. If Republicans were really conservatives, they’d be trimming better than barbers
if republicans were really conservatives, he wouldn’t have to.
I will believe it only when I see it.
Funny how the Bush Administration has found so many places to save a few bucks, but never bothers to mention them until an hour before they push the paperwork through.As Daniel Gross points out:
“I think they’re more worried about Grandpa being a welfare queen.”
What he does in the privacy of his own home is his business, not yours, and certainly not the government’s.
moonbiter, maybe their previous budget allocated a gazillion dollars to each department. Cutting from those projects would yield a few hundred billion quite easily.
It’d be the same sort of money that you save when you buy extra stuff on sale, but hey, these guys prefer fiction in all things.