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Posted at 3:55 PM ET, 02/ 3/2011

Republicans begin to cut spending

By Jennifer Rubin

As The Post reported, House Republicans have come forward with their first significant spending cut plan. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc), the House Budget Committee chairman, proposed to "cap total appropriations at $1.055 trillion for fiscal 2011 -- $74 billion less than Obama's request but only $32 billion less than the current level of spending."

The National Journal explained; "Overall, the proposed cuts would be the largest one-year reductions in decades. But they fall short of the House Republicans' campaign promise to roll back non-security discretionary spending to 2008 levels, or the $100 billion in cuts for this year alone." National security, to the surprise of some, is targeted for $16 billion in cuts. ("The cuts would not affect combat operations in Afghanistan or Iraq, but it isn't clear what other parts of defense or homeland security spending lawmakers do want to cut.") On an annualized basis, this is a 20 percent reduction in discretionary spending.

A Ryan spokesman reminded me, "House Democrats failed to pass, or even propose, a budget for Fiscal Year 2011. As a result of this unprecedented failure, the spending spree continued unchecked. No budget, no priorities, no restraints." By contrast, he told me, the Republican budget proposal "in one of our first acts in the new majority, we voted to cut Congress's own budget and will continue to advance spending cuts on the House floor. We voted to cut trillions of dollars in new government spending by advancing a repeal of the president's health-care law. The president has asked for an increase in the national debt limit, but we must first work to enact serious spending cuts and reforms."

The conservative Republican Study Committee fought for $100 billion in cuts, but the difference between the two proposals is not as great as it might seem. Like Ryan, the RSC plan works off of the president's budget. When put on an annualized basis that is only $59 billion less than the president's budget.

Some conservatives will see this as not bold enough. But remember, this is simply the remainder of this budget year, and does not represent the House Republicans' own budget priorities that will be reflected in the 2012 budget. As The Post noted, "Leadership aides said lawmakers will be permitted to offer amendments to cut even more deeply than the levels Ryan has set. Regardless of where spending winds up in 2011, Republicans are committed to cutting further in the budget they are now preparing for the fiscal year that begins in October, the aides said. They declined to commit to keeping spending at 2008 levels in 2012 and beyond."

If they do that it will represent a considerable improvement over Obama's proposed freeze at the current spending level. It's not too hard to tell which party is more devoted to cutting spending.


By Jennifer Rubin  | February 3, 2011; 3:55 PM ET
Categories:  Budget  
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Comments

The Pauls have proposed 500 Billion in immediate spending cuts.

Posted by: rcaruth | February 3, 2011 4:12 PM | Report abuse


(A)Republicans begin to cut spending
By Jennifer Rubin/see part B


(B)As The Post reported, House Republicans have come forward with their first significant spending cut PLAN./see part C

(C)There will not be a penny of actual cuts in 2011-12.

Posted by: rcaruth | February 3, 2011 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Let's me get this straight. The House took a 5 percent cut in staffing, but the country must take a 20 percent cut? How is that equitable?

Posted by: Amminadab | February 3, 2011 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Republicans propose what?????? Give me the details. You can't because did not give any, as usual. Try not being a right wing hack J.R. The Pubs are still at it taking steps to make the rich richer and the poor poorer.

Posted by: dkcoon | February 3, 2011 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I want to know why with all this talk of cutting spending, no one ever seems to call for cuts in foreign aid? Why on earth are we giving nearly every country millions of dollars? Are we trying to buy thier friendship, because it looks to me like it's not working. We are giving money to dictators like Mubarak! That makes no sense to me at all.

Posted by: cyberman333 | February 3, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

good to see that the right wing propaganda machine found a home here at WAPO. Considering the "conservatives" have bashed the Obama administration for cutting only discretionary spending in the past, what does this plan do that Obama's doesn't? The conservatives chewed him out over not enough, yet their plan isn't enough either....oh, and the Dems couldn't bring forth a plan for Fiscal 2011, because the Republicans blocked the idea until the tax cuts were passed, and then complained how the lame duck session shouldn't be passing anything, including the START treaty.

Just like them, you are a freaking hypocrite. Go work for Fox so at least WAPO can claim some sort of unbiasness.

Posted by: cgallaway2000 | February 3, 2011 5:14 PM | Report abuse

.


The extremist Republican party huffed and they puffed, they promised their Teabagger base they'd usher in an era of austerity, yet this is the best House Republicans could do?!?!


To put this into perspective, after spending the last two years claiming that President Obama was destroying America by adding to our national debt, now that the GOP is in power, they've proposed a budget which would decrease the federal budget deficit by just 2%. I guess they must be socialists too.


WHERE ARE THE JOBS, REPUGS ?!?!


.

Posted by: DrainYou | February 3, 2011 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Wayto go Republicans, keep it up. This why you were elected.

Posted by: farmsnorton | February 3, 2011 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Throughout history taxes have been assessed in many ways, money, labor, goods or services,etc. Taking public services away is just another form of taxation for those who relied on those services, as well as on those whose jobs provided them. "No new or increased taxes?" Baloney. Some just choose to tax those who can afford it the least.

Posted by: Valjean1 | February 3, 2011 5:19 PM | Report abuse

This is a good start, but there is lots more to be done. And I agree with the comment that we should cut foreign aid. Then let's bring all the troops home and put them on the Mexican border where the real threat lies.

Posted by: Chippewa | February 3, 2011 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Why are they only looking at non-defense spending and foreign aid? They want to eliminate social security, but won't give up their dreams of ruling the world.

Posted by: CharlesS | February 3, 2011 5:21 PM | Report abuse

What about defense, intelligence and foreign aid? It's time to get serious. We are going to have to look at everything. 32 billion reduction! It's obvious that even the tea party people aren't serious about this.

Posted by: CharlesS | February 3, 2011 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Congressmen Boehner and Rand Paul, together with Mitch (entitlements) McConnel...

... "Should Have the Same Health Insurance that is Good Enough For the American People"! Purchase their Health Insurance from Health Insurance Corporations as they want to make Americans do.

Since American Taxpayers are Paying All Govenment Employee Salaries, unlimited Government Healthcare, and retirement benefits far beyond what non-govenment wokers receive....

We Demand the Elimination of Government Healthcare for all Federal, State, and Municipal Employees!

Hypocrisy must be Ended! Revolt!

Posted by: rmcnicoll | February 3, 2011 5:25 PM | Report abuse

The GOP are such liars...where are the JOBS they promised to work for...sad thing is ..... they have no CLUE of what to do...so they defer to other agendas. What a bunch of liars...when will this country wake up and see they are for nothing but big business and the rich. Egypt...here we come if they don't get their heads out of the cranial-rectal position. And people actually vote for Repulicans?? The weather is not changing, lets cut money, lets screw the working person...lets be a Republican....wake up America...the GOP is in the pocket of big business..they don't give a rats butt about you and I... and the dems...all they want to do is spend, spend, spend. Go figure

Posted by: tsoitawodi4u | February 3, 2011 5:29 PM | Report abuse

The GOP are such liars...where are the JOBS they promised to work for...sad thing is ..... they have no CLUE of what to do...so they defer to other agendas. What a bunch of liars...when will this country wake up and see they are for nothing but big business and the rich. Egypt...here we come if they don't get their heads out of the cranial-rectal position. And people actually vote for Repulicans?? The weather is not changing, lets cut money, lets screw the working person...lets be a Republican....wake up America...the GOP is in the pocket of big business..they don't give a rats butt about you and I... and the dems...all they want to do is spend, spend, spend. Go figure

Posted by: tsoitawodi4u | February 3, 2011 5:30 PM | Report abuse

That's funny. They had NO interest in cutting spending when Bush was spending more than all the previous presidents combined. Then they were chanting "Deficits don't matter, deficits don't matter!"

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | February 3, 2011 5:33 PM | Report abuse


BFD GOP, FY2011 DEFICIT $1,480 Billion

WHERE'S THE BEEF?

Posted by: Warof2010 | February 3, 2011 5:36 PM | Report abuse

This article is garbage just like the republican agenda. A simple review of recent history will tell you that Reagan set the US up for the recession that it's been in. It was staved off by Clinton, and exacerbated by Bush's lame a** who destroyed the surplus that Clinton left upon leaving office.

Oh, and to that jackass who claims we should put the troops at the Mexican border where the "real threat" is - how about reading the article in the Dec 2010 issue of the Economist and learn a thing or two about how dependent the US agricultural sector is on migrant labor, AND how disinterested American citizens are in working those jobs. If agricultural labor was paid even minimum wage and given health benefits, retirement, 401K, the works, you'd see the cost of domestic produce SKYROCKET. We export most of it, but what we keep in the country is affordable because of migrant labor. So unless you can afford to pay $10 for a bag of oranges or $5 for three strawberries then you might want to add some insight to your clearly ignorant opinion.

Posted by: henriettahenry | February 3, 2011 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Cut spending.
Cut spending.
Cut spending.
All revenue bills should be sunsetted.

Posted by: barnyfife | February 3, 2011 6:41 PM | Report abuse

It's sad but funny to read comments from libs commenting on this topic asking Republicans where all of the jobs are. To paraphrase Pvt. Hudson from "Aliens", "Hey, maybe you haven't been keeping up on current events, but the Dems have been in control of congress for the last four years and the White House for the last two, pal!"

As for me, I prefer John Stossel's approach: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/02/02/i_can_balance_the_budget_108742.html

Posted by: coffeetime | February 3, 2011 6:50 PM | Report abuse

It's sad but funny to read comments from libs commenting on this topic asking Republicans where all of the jobs are. To paraphrase Pvt. Hudson from "Aliens", "Hey, maybe you haven't been keeping up on current events, but the Dems have been in control of congress for the last four years and the White House for the last two, pal!"

As for me, I prefer John Stossel's approach: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/02/02/i_can_balance_the_budget_108742.html

Posted by: coffeetime | February 3, 2011 6:51 PM | Report abuse

the republicans are once again showing why they are the favorites of the super-rich: they protect their pocket books.

another way to balance a budget and draw down the national deficit would be to start paying it off, but this would involve raising some taxes. but the super-rich know there is only one way to significantly increase tax revenue: raise their taxes.

poor and middle-class americans are spending their money when they get it, plowing it back into the economy and doing their best to move things along. the super-wealthy are not spending their money (they simply have too much of it; they couldn't spend it in a thousand lifetimes), they are 'investing' it in markets and industries in foreign countries, putting it in hedge funds which are not doing anyone any good and are raising gas prices even more, or are just 'sitting on it' until the next esoteric investment vehicle comes along.

we've seen how enamored these so-called 'tea party patriots' are of the super-rich, but they aren't doing anything to help regular citizens.

Posted by: grasspress | February 3, 2011 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Come on guys the Tea Party is going to stop spending expect for billions they'll spend that's "what America was founded on".

Posted by: Nosmanic | February 3, 2011 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Whenever budget stuff comes up here, the lefties deride the Republican spending cut proposals as not serious or not enough. Do you lefties out there therefore concede the fact that we need to cut spending? And if so, do you think Obama's spending plan (as said in the SOTU) is a good one for this country? I'd love to hear some opinions on that.

coffeetime, I'm impressed with your paraphrase of Hudson in Aliens. I actually just saw that movie on the big screen a few months ago. I never get tired of it.

Posted by: RitchieEmmons | February 3, 2011 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Cutting discretionary spending is a lot like skipping your morning latte but ignoring your American Express bill.

Neither side is serious about the deficit until: a) entitlements like Social Security and Medicare are reformed to full solvency; b) taxes are raised on all Americans, especially those who can most afford it; and c) the military budget is also reduced.

Posted by: EnemyOfTheState | February 3, 2011 10:43 PM | Report abuse

The only job Eric Cantor cares about is the speaker's job, which he'll get when the cryin' cheatin' John Boner is driven from office.

Posted by: Observer691 | February 4, 2011 10:15 AM | Report abuse

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