At the federal and state levels, from the east coast to the west coast, in traditionally conservative and even traditionally liberal jurisdictions, the 2010 elections had one message: fix the fiscal problems! It seems that jurisdictions that saw the biggest shifts in political ideology have taken their mandate on acted on it.
The State of Wisconsin which ousted long time liberal Senator Russ Feingold and equally liberal Governor Jim Doyle, wasted little time in responding to voter expectations. Governor Scott Walker and the Republican led Assembly and Senate have delivered budget changes that will benefit taxpayers not only today but into the future.
Michigan, under the new leadership of Governor Rick Snyder, is also taking steps to restore fiscal sanity to a state long led by Democrats who thought that Washington would fund them in perpetuity regardless of the outcome. If you thought the screaming and ballyhooing in Wisconsin was entertaining, Governor Snyder has a plan that allows the State to take over failing counties and municipalities under emergency decrees.
Yes, there are signs across the country that adults are finally in charge of the checkbook. Across the country but not in Washington, D.C.
The same “fix the fiscal mess” message that changed leadership in Wisconsin, Michigan and other states elected 6 incremental Senate seats and 63 incremental House seats. These increases came with an expectation that a host of fiscal issues including defunding Obamacare, reducing the deficit, reigning in government mandates, fixing entitlements etc., etc., etc., would be fixed.
To date, the newly elected Congress, especially the House, has been nothing but a disappointment. They have provided a show legislation for reversing the Obamacare mandate. However, they have tacitly or purposely avoided all opportunities to date of defunding the mandate. This in spite of finding a surprise $105 B implementation mandate in the Obamacare legislation! With all that we know now, it is hard to understand why every effort and every method is not being used to starve Obamacare of every dollar it needs for implementation and management.
There seems to be no recognition by this Congress of the need to shrink the size of government. Even though the GAO has issued a report showing massive duplication of authority of government agencies, the elimination of which has been estimated to save $100B annually, the current budget proposals show no desire to address this low hanging fruit of spending reduction.
Perhaps the most disappointing action of the short life of this Congress is their action, or rather, inaction of dealing with a budget.
As part of their campaign promises, the House Republican leadership comitted to a $100 B spending reduction for the current fiscal year. However, each time they go to the microphone, that number seems to slip. At this point, the House budget has $60 B in cuts with concerns being raised that this amount is “draconian.”
Draconian? Really? We had a deficit of $222 B in February ALONE and someone has the audacity to think $60 B is a problem?
The House is expected to pass ANOTHER continuing resolution on Tuesday. The Senate is expected to agree to that resoltution to keep the government running past Thursday. WHY?
With a $222 B shortfall in February (that’s one single month if you went to Wisconsin public schools) and the House budget fighting to get a reduction of $60 B for the rest of the year, what’s the point? Even if they got the House plan adopted, should we really be congratulating them and doing high fives? NO and HELL NO!
Wisconsin, Michigan and other states finally got some adults to deal with their fiscal situations. Where are the adults we thought we elected to the House and the Senate? McConnell has been a known RINO and inside the beltway guy. Second only to Obama, he decides his principals by what he believes the personal political impact to be. While it’s only been a few months, I’m ready to throw the towel in on Boehner as well. Rather than force the issue of really addressing a spending reduction, Boenher is allowing Congress to continue to kick the can down the road. For what?
We have a spending problem in Washington. We elected men and women to address this spending problem. Every day we allow the current administration to continue to function without forcing the issue is a day that the American people say “see, you’re no different than the Democrats” and another day that spending continues without abatement.
Like Governors Scott Walker and Rick Snyder, it’s time to address the spending problem head on. We should have no more continuing resolutions. Let the government “shut down.” Let’s see who notices. Let’s have the debate.