Andy, I certainly agree with you that the promise regarding domestic discretionary spending in the Republican pledge document can only serve as a beginning. Federal spending can’t be brought under control without serious entitlement reform — that’s simply where the money is, and also where the out-of-control growth is. And it does look like Republicans are preparing to make some serious entitlement reform proposals in their first real budget, the 2012 budget, which Paul Ryan’s committee will propose in March. But I wouldn’t dismiss their start — cutting domestic discretionary spending by 20 percent is no small matter; nothing like it has ever been done before, it would make a serious difference, and it won’t be easy. To push that right out of the gate, and to start it in the present fiscal year, is a major step and a good sign.
by Yuval Levin