Democrats: We Are Not Going To Cut a Thing
So the Democrats are drawing their line in the sand: at $6 billion in spending cuts.
A top Senate Democrat said Sunday that the $6 billion in additional spending cuts that his party offered is the limit Democrats can accept – drawing a line well short of Republicans’ goal with less than two weeks to go before a government shutdown if the two sides can’t agree.
Sen. Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, the second-ranking Democrat in the chamber, said the $6 billion proposal, released Friday, has “pushed this to the limit” on domestic spending. That comment stands in sharp opposition to a House Republican bill containing an additional $57 billion in cuts below 2010 spending.
Republicans should take up cudgels over this. $6 billion is nothing: Congress spent $3.3 trillion in 2010. $6 billion is 0.001 of that, a number that rounds down to about zero. Nothing.
Republicans are rightly afraid that a government shutdown will turn into a replay of their Clinton-era troubles, and they should be careful. But if you’re going to have a fight, this is the fight to have: Democrats are saying in essence that every dollar of federal spending is sacred, that spending is never coming down, and that government has a prior claim on the wealth of generations of Americans unborn. I don’t usually give advice to politicians, but I’d make a marquee message out of that fact: Even after the shellacking, Democrats are willing to cut nothing of any significance. This isn’t shaping up to be a replay of 1995; it’s shaping up to be a replay of 2010.