Republican Debt Plan Threatens the Nation's Financial Security
On Tuesday the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) scored the Republican debt plan with savings that were smaller than its $900 billion short-term increase in the debt limit. Because Republicans had vowed to cut spending by at least as much as the debt limit was increased, Republicans modified their proposal on Wednesday, and CBO now scores it with $917 billion in savings. Republicans rushed the substitute to the Rules Committee last night with plans to bring it to the floor today.
The revised plan is substantially the same as the original, threatening the country's fiscal situation by raising the debt ceiling by only enough to pay the country's bills for several months. The short-term debt ceiling increase is in exchange for discretionary cuts. Then the plan creates a Commission and charges it with finding $1.8 trillion in additional deficit reduction -- cuts that threaten Medicare and Social Security benefits because Republicans have ruled out finding even a dime of savings from closing a single special interest tax break. The plan then conditions a second debt ceiling increase on the enactment of at least $1.6 trillion in deficit reduction. Republicans have also proposed a measure that would effectively enshrine the Republican budget plan in the Constitution. This is not a balanced approach that is good for the nation.