In Simple Terms
By BOBBIE McAULIFFE
The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction was created in August 2011 during the debate to increase our national debt limit. Leaders in each chamber of the U.S. Congress each selected three members to serve on a committee charged with identifying $1.5 trillion in budget cuts over a 10-year period by Nov. 23 of this year.
It was a compromise by the Democrats to encourage Republicans to support increasing the limit on the amount of money congress can borrow.
Things are not going well. Democrats on the committee won’t agree to budget cuts proposed by the Republicans and Republicans will not agree to “revenue increases” proposed by the Democrats on the committee.
When (if) the committee reaches an agreement it will be put to the House and Senate to approve or reject without amendments by Dec. 23 of this year.
That Nov. 23 deadline is fast approaching, and we are getting closer to reaching the new debt ceiling of $15 trillion. It appears the Democrats have not heard, or are choosing to ignore the age old advice of “When you find yourself in too deep, stop digging.”
The obvious answer to getting control of the budget deficit and national debt is to quit spending more than you have coming in. Raising taxes will not accomplish that by itself.
It is appearing to me both sides are willing to run out the clock. If they do not reach an agreement, a “trigger” mechanism will go into effect automatically cutting $1.2 trillion from the budget and adding another half trillion to the debt limit. If Democrats maintain any kind of control in the 2012 senate elections, the Bush Tax Cuts will expire at the end of 2012, and that will create the new revenue Democrats want; thousands or maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars from the wealthy, but a lot will come from the middle and lower class also when the bottom tax rate goes back to Bill Clinton’s 15 percent, the child tax credit is cut in half, the Earned Income Tax Credit will be reduced and the ‘marriage penalty’ returns.
Putting it in perspective and simple terms; there is one thousand billion in a trillion. If congress began to pay down the debt at $1 billion a year, it would take 15 thousand years to get it paid off.
Another blogger put it in even simpler terms here: http://littledixieupdate.com/?p=267#comments
One thing that Congress could do is remove some of the doubts and anxiety for small business to expand, create new jobs = more taxpayers = increasing revenue without raising taxes.
The Republican led House of Representatives has sent 16 bills to the Senate that will encourage job growth leading to the economic recovery our nation needs, but Majority Leader Harry Reid will not bring any of them to the floor for debate and a vote, and President Obama is blaming Republicans for holding things up. The Senate has sent no proposals to the House.
I do not know about you, but I am becoming very anxious. I receive an almost daily PORK REPORT from Senator Coburn’s office that details millions (sometimes billions) of dollars in government waste similar to the “adult baby” and “treadmills for shrimp” reports most of us saw on television. These would be a very good place to start cutting spending without argument.