From the other side of the Looking Glass:
Excluding spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Boehner bill would reduce overall spending by $917 billion over 10 years, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates. Similarly, Reid's bill would cut spending by $927 billion.That's a difference of only $10 billion in spending cuts between the Boehner bill and the Reid bill--over ten years. About $1 billion a year. Pitiful.
Breaking those estimates down further, Boehner's bill would cut discretionary spending by $756 billion and save $156 billion in interest costs on the debt. The comparable numbers for Reid's bill are $752 billion and $153 billion.That's a difference of a mere $4 billion in cuts in discretionary spending cuts and $3 billion in cuts in interest costs on the debt over 10 long years.
Another dose of harsh reality:
A couple of caveats here. First, the appropriations themselves have not been decided upon. So though the two bills cap annual spending in similar ways, they do not spell out what programs will have to be cut as a result.In other words: business as usual.
Expect lots more hollow political posturing, followed by previously unseen levels of conciliatory "compromising" over already-agreed upon terms.
And because this legislation won't bind a future Congress, a future Congress could undo the caps and spend more money, undoing the savings.Expect more spending and undoing of savings, even though the savings aren't really savings at all, just reductions of increases in spending.
This explains why Boehner's having such a hard time whipping conservative support for the plan. Among the members who refused to raise the debt limit without also enacting the radical Cut, Cap, and Balance plan, this one seems positively profligate.
And we must ensure that we have collectively stoked a fire hot enough to thoroughly toast the feet of the entire Congress.
Looks like we need more freshman lawmakers elected by Tea Party constituencies and fewer "old friends and colleagues" from both sides of the aisle.