On Fox News Sunday, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who thinks that increasing unemployment benefits is the best way to grow the economy, insisted that we don’t have a spending problem, we merely have a “budget deficit problem.” In other words, the current spending level is just fine, but the federal government needs a lot more revenue. This is apparently the official Socialist Democrat position:
Pelosi’s motion was seconded by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) on NBC’s Meet the Press, where Durbin laughably explained that the sequester was “designed as a budget threat, not as a budget strategy” – and stated that the only approach to solving the budget problem was to raise taxes again.
President Obama himself agreed with that perspective in his weekly online address. The budget sequester he signed off on – the sequester proposal he insisted upon – is now the Republicans’ fault. Obama claims that if the sequester goes through, “firefighters and food inspectors” will bear the brunt of the cuts, as well as cancer research and people with disabilities. It’s the usual liberal demagogic approach to any problem: world to end tomorrow, minorities hit hardest.
Obama’s solution: tax increases. Again. “Congress should pass a similar set of balanced cuts and close more tax loopholes until they can find a way to replace the sequester with a smarter, longer-term solution,” said Obama.
Of course, Obama has been on this “not a spending problem” kick for months. He infamously informed House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) that there is no spending problem back during the fiscal cliff debate.
This morning on CNBC, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer joined the “no spending problem” chorus and, when pressed on the issue, yelled “Bush!”:
“Sir, does the country have a spending problem?” Caruso-Cabrera asked.
“Does the country have a – the country has a paying-for problem,” Hoyer replied. “We haven’t paid for what we’ve bought.”
“Are we promising too much?” Caruso-Cabrera pressed.
“Absolutely,” Hoyer agreed. “If we don’t pay, we shouldn’t buy.”
“How is that different from a spending problem?” She followed up.
“We spent a lot of money when George Bush was President of the United States,” Hoyer replied.
At a press briefing, Hoyer reinforced the “we need more revenue” message:
“It’s not a question of a spending problem. Nobody has a spending problem if they have the resources to pay for what they spend. No family, if they can afford what it buys, has a spending problem. The problem becomes when you spend, buy and don’t pay,” the Maryland Democrat told reporters at a pen-and-pad briefing Tuesday.
Deficits, on the other hand, “are destabilizing to the economy and dangerous for future generations and rob generations,” he added. “When they say we have a spending problem — we have a paying problem.”
Expect to hear the word “invest” on multiple occasions during tonight’s SOTU speech. That’s the President’s code for “spend more, not less.”
The Socialist Democrats aren’t satisfied with a federal budget that’s almost 25% of GDP. They’re shooting for 30%, 40%, … I suspect that to the Socialist Democrats, the lowest acceptable level of federal spending is always more than whatever the current level is.