01.18.2013 0

Budget cutters have important battle ahead

Ship of FoolsBy Adam Bitely — Those in favor of cutting spending from the federal government’s budget have several battles ahead where significant cuts can be achieved. For the first time since the summer of 2011, when Republicans rolled over to Obama on the last debt ceiling increase, House Republicans stand in position to make significant demands and are armed with a handful of options that will allow them to win the battle this time.

The debt ceiling debate, the next immediate battle on the horizon, will be a real test of whether or not House Republicans are willing to stand up for deficit reduction.

The last time the debt ceiling was raised, the deal reached resulted in the failed “supercommittee” that led directly to the sequester — a set of cuts set to take place shortly.

The trouble is that those cuts are relatively unpopular with many establishment politicians in Washington, D.C., and unfortunately may be eliminated in the upcoming debate. In fact, they should have already been implemented, but were delayed in the recent tax deal on the fiscal cliff.

Leaving the sequester aside, through the vote on the debt ceiling, Republicans can force through major cuts to entitlements and discretionary spending.

Democrats would rather not have the debt ceiling at all and consider passing a debt ceiling increase an absolute must. Knowing that the Democrats have placed such a high value on the debt ceiling increase, it is reasonable to assume that House Republicans will be able to force significant cuts and reforms through. That is if House Republicans are willing to fight for it.

In a Memo for the Movement cosigned by heads of various conservative organizations, the following stance was taken: “Conservatives should not raise our nation’s statutory debt limit unless Congress passes and the President signs into law real reforms and immediate spending reductions that place America on a path to balance within 10 years without raising taxes and keeping the budget in balance.”

Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson, who signed onto the Memo, went even further, saying, “With the $16.4 trillion national debt growing disproportionately larger than the economy, the American people are rapidly running out of time to get Washington, D.C.’s spending and borrowing addiction under control.”

The good news is that several Republicans in Washington have prepared budget plans that would in fact balance the federal government’s budget within 10 years.

Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) and Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) as well as the House Republican Study Committee have all proposed plans that would lead the federal budget to balance within 10 years. This gives Obama and Democrats multiple options to choose from that are all significantly better than the options offered in the past.

The key to getting everything through is by tying the “Full Faith and Credit Act” (FFCA) to the budget proposal. The FFCA would prioritize payments should a deal not be reached by the time the debt ceiling is reached. It would ensure that payments on the interest, Social Security, Medicare, defense, and veterans’ benefits are prioritized and made. It effectively takes away any theater that could be waged around Republicans pushing the nation over some sort of debt cliff, effectively removing the threat of default.

House Republicans have several options. They have several budgets to choose from that will put the federal government on the right track to get away from piling up debt.

The question is will Republicans stand up and fight or roll over? The keys to success are there, but are they willing to use them? We will know very soon.

Adam Bitely is the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com.

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