Shutdown Deal: Christmas Comes Early to Washington and Well-Connected


Seventeen days after the “shutdown” took place, a deal has been signed by President Obama. It contains is a victory for the big spenders in the Beltway, and nobody else.

Here are the basics:

The debt ceiling was raised until mid-February.

The government will run at 2013 spending levels through part of January.

A conference committee – similar to the failed “Super Committee” of 2011 – will be created to findways to create deficit reduction by December.

In what Democrats are calling a concession to Republicans, income verification will be included as part of Obamacare’s exchanges.

Here’s why this deal is absolutely awful for the American people:

The debt ceiling was raised for the second time this year, and when one considers the temporary elimination of the debt ceiling earlier this year, it means Republicans have failed three times in 2013 alone to use the debt ceiling to enact even modest spending reduction measures in exchange for giving big spenders more room for their addiction.

The government will run at 2013 spending levels – meaning spending will be $21 billion higher than required by the Budget Control Act of 2011.

The conference committee is likely to fail, as the Super Committee did. Furthermore, there are indicators Republicans may “compromise” – in other words, probably agree to tax increases:

Few held out hope that the talks would yield an ambitious plan to overhaul the tax code or restructure federal health and retirement programs, the biggest drivers of future borrowing. But there were signs that Republicans may be more inclined to compromise and less inclined to follow what Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) called “the fringe elements” of the GOP.

“The reality is there’s a much larger population within our caucus that recognizes reality for what it is,” said Schock, who represents the iconic middle-America town of Peoria. “At the end of the day, whatever we pass will have to be a bipartisan bill. The sooner that our conference recognizes that we’re going to have to negotiate with the other side, the more we can get done.”

Somehow, it escapes Rep. Shock’s notice that it is Democrats who are ignoring negotiation, as seen in this whole “shutdown” fight. Republicans offered at least four versions of bills to run the government, and the Senate ignored them all.

Income verification is not a concession to anyone, other than the strategists in the White House and the Democratic-controlled Senate. It was included in Obamacare’s regulatory structure, and then unilaterally delayed by the Administration. In other words, this “concession” by President Obama is nothing more than needed enforcement of a part of Obamacare.

Congress has once again provided their constituents a clear-cut list of who stands with the American people and who stands with political elites. 2014 is just around the corner and, as taxpayers are painfully aware, elections have consequences.