Zoinks! The Republicans are actually starting to sound all Republicany.
The Democrat controlled Congress currently has no plans to pass a budget for the new fiscal year, something that the last one hundred and ten sessions of Congress have managed to do regardless of how bitterly divided it was. Yet, Nancy Pelosi with her 70+ majority isn’t even going to try…I guess mainly because they know they can’t justify themselves to the voters in the fall.
Enter the Party of No, led my JBdotC fav Rep. Paul Ryan, with…wait, this can’t be right. An idea how to save $1.3 Trillion dollars over the next decade? But…Paul Ryan is a Republican and the Republican’s are the Party of No. They just say no to everything without presenting an alternative.
To that I say, to paraphrase the great Western philosopher Paul Levesque, I have two words for you, SUCK IT…
* Cancel Unused TARP Funds. Prohibit the Treasury Secretary from entering into new commitments under the Troubled Asset Relief Program [TARP]. Ending TARP would prevent up to $396 billion in additional disbursements; CBO estimates savings of $16 billion. H.R. 3140 introduced by Rep. Tom Price of Georgia.
* Cancel Unspent ‘Stimulus’ Funds. Rescind all unobligated budget authority authorized under the “stimulus” bill and dedicate to deficit reduction. Saves up to $266 billion. H.R. 3140 introduced by Rep. Tom Price of Georgia.
* Cut and Cap Discretionary Spending. Return non-defense discretionary spending to pre-Obama (fiscal year 2008) baseline levels. Saves up to $925 billion. Legislation introduced by Reps. Ryan and Hensarling (H.R. 3964) and Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio (H.R 3298) include caps on discretionary spending.
* Reduce Government Employment. Hire one person for every two who leaves civilian government service until the workforce is reduced to pre-Obama levels (exempting the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs). Saves an estimated $35 billion. H.R. 5348 introduced by Rep. Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming.
* Freeze Government Pay. Freeze Federal civilian pay for 1 year. Saves an estimated $30 billion.
* Adopt the Legislative Line-Item Veto. Enact a constitutional line-item veto law. The President’s FY 2011 budget included terminations, reductions, and savings that would achieve $23 billion in one year. While Congress may not accept all these savings, the Line Item Veto can help reduce spending. H.R. 1294 introduced by Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.
* Reform and Bring Transparency to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Reform these companies by ending conservatorship, shrinking their portfolios, establishing minimum capital standards, reducing conforming loan limits, and bringing transparency to taxpayer exposure. According to CBO, the cost to taxpayers of putting government in control of Fannie and Freddie is $373 billion through 2020. Saves an estimated $30 billion. H.R. 4889 introduced by Rep. Jeb Hensarling of Texas. H.R. 4653 introduced by Rep. Scott Garrett of New Jersey.
* Create a Sunset Commission. Establish a commission to conduct systematic reviews of Federal programs and agencies, and make recommendations for those that should be terminated; and provide for automatic sunset of programs unless expressly reauthorized by the Congress. H.R. 393 introduced by Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas.
Of course, the rub now is for the Republicans to back it up with action, which they won’t be able to do until taking back the House…which unlike some jackasses in Washington, I’m not going to temp fate by handicapping our chances of doing that in November. For now I’ll take the plan, the idea, and the two page handout that can be give to voters at town hall meetings all summer.