The Phony Budget Cuts In “Cut, Cap, And Balance”

Not surprisingly, it turns out that the House GOP’s “Cut, Cap, And Balance” plan, in addition to being little more than a political stunt, isn’t really serious about cutting spending:

Under the bill, discretionary budget authority would be capped at about $1 trillion for FY 2012, and discretionary outlays would be capped at $1.22 trillion. There is an exception for operations related to the global war on terrorism of $126 billion.

Also, Social Security, Medicare, Veterans Affairs, and interest payments on the debt would be excluded from direct spending limits.

These last several items, of course, happen to constitute the vast majority of Federal spending. Exempting them is a sign that the authors of the bill are not serious about cutting spending at all.

Peter Suderman comments:

Lots of conservatives back the plan, and balanced budget requirements typically poll well across the political spectrum. But a spending cap that quietly exempts Medicare, Social Security, military health care (which has also been beset by exploding costs in recent years) seems awful convenient, and unlikely to be all that effective in the long run.

To say the least. This is not a serious plan. Fortunately, it’s not going anywhere.


FILED UNDER: Congress, Deficit and Debt, Terrorism, US Politics, , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Tsar Nicholas II says:

    No good deed (by Republicans) can go unpunished (on the Internet).