Sunday, July 24, 2011

GOP Deficit Stance Ignores Party's Recent History

Michael Steel (left), spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner and not to be confused with the former RNC chair, responded to Sen Majority Leader Harry Reid’s accusation of Republican intransigence in debt ceiling talks:

On Saturday, Steel flipped the blame back on the Democrats, noting that the Republican-controlled House had passed the GOP's "Cut, Cap and Balance" legislation last week, only to have Senate Democrats kill the bill. The proposal would have hiked the debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion only if Congress amended the Constitution to bar deficit spending…

“Bar deficit spending”? Remember when the Bush administration conducted two wars and passed tax cuts for the wealthy and an unfunded Medicare drug prescription program–one that will cost $1 trillion over 10 years? Did the Republicans protest then? No, they saw the light as deficit hawks the moment Obama was elected president. Dick Cheney himself said, “Reagan proved deficits don’t matter.” That must explain why Obama inherited a deficit $1.2 trillion in the red.

Is it realistic or necessary to “bar deficit spending” by a Constitutional amendment? Did Clinton need this amendment to leave the country with a surplus? Are there times when the government is called upon to spend? Those times exemplified by the stimulus package, which the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office said increased jobs. We’re told, in a particularly facile argument, that families balance their budget, so why can’t the government? Families don’t do deficit spending? They don’t take out car loans, pay off mortgages, send kids to college?

Steel’s statement is nothing more than another false attempt to pass off the Republican party as a responsible economic steward.

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