[I]t has long been clear that Mr. Obama isn't interested in spending reform. In February he proposed a budget that spent more than any in U.S. history. In April he demanded that Congress pass a "clean" debt ceiling hike that included no spending cuts whatsoever. Only after House Republicans unveiled their own sweeping budgetary reforms did the White House rush to also claim it wanted deficit reduction as part of the debt-ceiling debate.
In June, the President dispatched Joe Biden to negotiate spending cuts, only to have the White House insist at the last minute that modest trims be accompanied by significant new taxes. Mr. Boehner and the Senate's bipartisan Gang of Six produced plans that would have acceded to that White House demand in exchange for substantive tax reform that would have lowered individual and corporate rates. Yet last week the White House backtracked on its agreement for the lower tax rates and demanded another $400 billion in tax revenues above the $800 billion the Speaker had already conceded.
The President insists his party is offering serious spending cuts and entitlement reform. He also likes to talk about "balance," which to him means real tax increases immediately and speculative spending cuts some time in the distant future. Behind the scenes the White House has only ever agreed to token reform and cuts. Here's a number for the debt history books: Mr. Obama's final offer in the Biden talks was a $2 billion cut in 2012 nondefense discretionary spending. The federal government spends more than $10 billion a day.
Now we're days from the August 2 default deadline set by the Treasury Department, and the President's only response has been to blame everybody else for deficient seriousness.
segunda-feira, 25 de julho de 2011
Toying With Default
Editorial de hoje do Wall Street Journal. Alguns trechos: