There seems to be a persistant drumbeat of criticism for the budget deal inked by Speaker Boehner among those on the right. Much of the criticism is understandable because the total amount of the cuts was much smaller than many had hoped would be possible. But as I said in 1, 2 previous posts, the good outweighs the bad significantly.
However, a number of misconceptions or myths have sprung up about the budget deal. Again, much disinformation has been spread in an effort to split the Tea Party from Boehner and GOP leadership. Who is behind that effort? What's your guess?
On his blog, Speaker Boehner has a factsheet separating myth from fact. While it may be enticing to some disappointed with the size of the deal to instantly accept the criticism of the deal, it would behoove them to hear Boehner's side of the story.
One of the persistant myths is being propagated by the news site Politico. They report that the Congressional Budget Office tallies the real impact of the cuts for this year at $352 million. A very disappointing figure. Boehner's response follows:
MYTH: “The CBO says this bill only cuts $352 million in spending this year.”Visit Speaker Boehner's blog for the full fact sheet countering the negative spin regarding this deal.
FACT: Despite misleading reports to the contrary, H.R. 1473 cuts nearly $40 billion in spending. This means the federal government will spend $78.5 billion less than what the President requested for 2011. Over ten years, the bill saves taxpayers an estimated $315 billion. The confusion is over the terms used by the CBO – and how they’ve been mangled by liberals determined to keep their spending binge alive. Democrats are spinning a number referred to as budget “outlays” – or how quickly money is spent – to claim the cuts are smaller than they are. But in appropriations bills, Congress determines “budget authority,” or how much to actually put in federal bank accounts. This is the number that matters: the only way an agency can spend money is if Congress fills up its account (provides “budget authority”); here, Congress is taking away tens of billions of dollars. By any reasonable standard, taking money away from someone so they can’t spend it is a cut – in this case, a cut of nearly $40 billion. Read “Budget Confusion” by The Weekly Standard for more.
For those curious who wondered why the mainstream media was so eager to build up Speaker Boehner after the deal was signed last Friday, the answer is clear: they built him up so they could tear him down. Let's not play that game. Yes, keep our leaders accountable and push them for MORE CUTS. But don't cut the rug out from under them after they succeed in this first, small step!