GOP wants to cut spending but still won’t tell us where.

House budget committee chairman Paul Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, issued a statement today about the federal government’s spending habits. He declared that, “Washington’s spending spree is over.” Mr. Ryan and the rest of the House’s GOP posse intend to introduce a pre-stimulus, pre-bailout spending package that is in keeping to the promise Republicans made during the 2010 mid-term campaign.

That sounds good. It won’t look good to me until we some specifics, namely where these cuts will take place. All we have heard from the GOP leadership is that everything is on the table and that the House’s vote to cut a few million dollars from the Congress’ own operational budget is supposed to be a down payment on the promise to trim government.

Mr. Ryan also threw in the House’s recent one and one-half page bill to repeal Obamacare. Wow. As if that had a chance of passing in a Democratic-controlled Senate.

This is not what I call a framework for serious government restructuring. A restructuring is what you need if you are really going to limit spending and reduce the size of government.

Government grew not because it spent more. It grew because its role changed, going beyond what the U.S. Constitution proscribed as the role of our national government.

Mr. Ryan. Start restructuring government along the lines of the Constitution and you’ll see the limits and savings you have been touting.

About Alton Drew

Alton Drew brings a straight forward and insightful brand of political market intelligence. Alton Drew graduated from the Florida State University with a Bachelor of Science in economics and political science (1984); a Master of Public Administration (1993); and a Juris Doctor (1999). You can also follow Alton Drew on Twitter @altondrew.
This entry was posted in Budget, Congress, Political Economy, Republicans and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to GOP wants to cut spending but still won’t tell us where.

  1. mcoville says:

    This is a poor attempt at a strawman attack. Rand Paul has proposed billions in budget cuts, http://www.randpaul2010.com/2011/01/senator-paul-introduces-500-billion-in-spending-cuts/.

    I have yet to see a budget cut from a Democrat in years.

    And I agree with you, we need to stop growing the scope of government, lets start with healthcare insurance mandates that force citizens to buy private insurance against their will.

  2. Shannon says:

    Chairman Ryan’s statement addressing “non-security discretionary spending” is a little concerning if not discouraging. While I believe any and all savings or revenue potentially helps our deficit crisis, but when you consider the likely budget allocations, “non-security discretionary spending” is a pretty slim piece of the pie.

    We will probably budget 23%+ to Defense (presumably part of “security”), 20% each to Social Security and Medicare, leaving servicing our dept and the discretionary portions of our annual budget. I have also read of a potential cut in Defense of @80 billion over 5 years. The yearly defense budget in 2009 was close to 800 Billion, so this proposal represents a 2% cut for 5 years in the single largest part of our budget…not negligible but not significant either.

    I’ve heard discussion of illuminating entire departments such as the Dept of Energy or the Dept of Education. Energy is less than 30 Billion (.8%) and Education is close to 70 Bil (1.8%). Any entity can eliminate waste and be more streamline, but is it prudent to drop entire departments when, in the case of the regulatory agency for energy production, we would be reducing our spending by only .8%?

    I don’t know the answer, but I too wonder what savings Mr Ryan proposes, specifically. The goal should be to streamline ALL budgetary items and first run a single year of not adding to the deficit, but I don’t believe the math is in our favor if we can’t be more honest about revenue as well. We have to accept that until we quit over spending by 30%, the deficit grows, which further reduces our opportunity to simply save our way out of this predicament.

    BTW, I really don’t buy into his comments about saving trillions by repealing the HC law. It’s a totally hypothetical figure and really not supported. As far as “down payments” go, millions just doesn’t float, since a down payment is seldom fractions of 1%. The ball is in their court, and they seemed to have hit a lob shot. America is primed for a better game than we’ve seen so far. In fact, this is a game with some serious consequences.

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