Pelosi on Spending Cuts: Nothing Left to Find
On Sunday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called Tea Party-minded Members of Congress “legislative arsonists.” She also made inflammatory policy statements that only the biggest spending addict could agree with.
The first claim focused on the effort to rein in spending through immediate budget cuts. From Politico:
“The cupboard is bare,” the California Democrat said in an interview aired Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “There’s no more cuts to make.”
“We all want to reduce the deficit,” she added. “Put everything on the table, review it, but you cannot have any more cuts just for the sake of cuts. Right now you’re taking trophies.”
What are these trophies the former Speaker is pointing to? Are they fraud, duplication, improper payments, and other inefficiencies in the federal government that Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) claims total one-third of federal spending? Would they be tax subsidies for “Big Oil” and direct payments to farmers Rep. Pelosi was supportive of cutting seven months ago? Or perhaps the dozens of Medicare, Medicaid, and other budget cuts President Obama has requested in multiple budget proposals?
Pelosi then doubled down, saying the federal government “cannot have any more cuts just for the sake of cuts.” Again, she ignores cuts listed above, but also, ignores how today’s high level of debt is causing a self-sustaining combination of increasing national debt and a slow-growing economy.
Politico also reports that the Minority Leader “blasted House Republicans who eye reductions to entitlement funding…” This attack is either made out of ignorance or dereliction of duty, given what the Director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said recently about America’s long-term budget problems:
[T]he largest federal programs are becoming much more expensive because of the retirement of the baby boomers and the rising costs of health care…
Furthermore, the CBO’s September 17 budget report focused a great deal of attention on the growing costs of “the major health care programs and Social Security.” In other words, most of America’s entitlement programs will be the primary cause of long-term budget challenges facing our country.
America’s financial health is on the line, whether the former Speaker believes it or not. What she calls “bare cupboard,” mainstream America calls “runaway spending.”