The Corner

So What’s Left?

So the budget deal is supposed to deliver $38 billion in spending cuts, including $20 billion in cuts to domestic discretionary spending. (House Republicans originally passed $61 billion of cuts in that category of spending.) Based on news accounts, quite a lot of that $20 billion could be phony: $6.2 billion in unspent money for the Census; $2.5 billion of highway funds that couldn’t be spent; $3.5 billion of unused spending authority in a children’s health-care program. Is it possible that Republicans have gone from $61 billion in domestic discretionary savings all the way down to $8 billion?

Update: I’m informed that the Census money isn’t part of the $20 billion in claimed domestic discretionary cuts. So we could be back up to $14 billion.

Ramesh Ponnuru — Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg View, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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