The Harmful Republican Budget

As House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan prepares to unveil his fiscal year 2015 budget tomorrow, experts agree that he must employ even more fuzzy math* than last year in order to meet his unrealistic budget goals.  As the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explains in their report:

Basic budget arithmetic suggests that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s coming budget will be at least as extreme as his budget last year, and likely more so.  The Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) latest deficit projections are roughly $1 trillion higher over the coming decade than last year’s projections.  If the new Ryan budget, slated for release this week, is to achieve the same goals as last year’s — reaching balance within ten years and reversing sequestration cuts in defense without raising revenues — it will need to expand its already steep cuts in domestic programs by hundreds of billions of dollars.”

As in past years, Chairman Ryan may not provide many details about how his proposed cuts would be achieved.  Last year, he called for converting Medicaid and SNAP to block grants, leaving it to the states to make the tough choices about which poor children, low-income seniors, or people with disabilities would not receive help.  Similarly, his budget included about $660 billion of unspecified ten-year cuts in mandatory programs — failing even to specify which programs would be cut.  And it gave little or no details on how to cut non-defense discretionary programs more than $600 billion below the already very austere post-sequestration levels.”

*Despite what House Republicans think, Americans know that 2+2 ≠ 10, and no amount of magic asterisks will make their budget realistic or responsible. 

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