Spending $3.1 Trillion We Don’t Have
As it stands now, the Democrats’ plan for the reconciliation bill is to add to the $235,000 of debt the U.S. government already owes each American household by borrowing another $25,000 per household next year, and then $9,000 per household every subsequent year until, as Charles Cooke explains, “the sun explodes.”
Today’s latest battle over the $3+ trillion bill is also a reminder, warns Kimberley Strassel in the WSJ, that Joe Biden, who spent his Senate career drifting with the Democratic tides, “is ill-equipped to step up with a vision that will unite battling factions.”
Really Ready, Mr. Biden?
Last December, Joe Biden bragged to newspaper columnists that he was more than ready to take on Republicans and progressive Democrats in Congress attempting to stymie his agenda.
I think I know what I’m doing, and I’ve been pretty damn good at being able to deal with the punchers. I know how to block a straight left and do a right hook. I understand it.
Fights have broken out over Medicare, drug pricing, climate provisions, and means-testing, Ms. Strassel reminds readers.
House committee chairmen rolled over objections and rushed out bills, only to confront a stalled Senate. Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema have refused to be rolled or rushed on the package, and the Monday deadline looms. Centrists say: Give us the infrastructure vote or reconciliation is toast. Progressives say: Give us all $3.5 trillion of our reconciliation dollars, or infrastructure is history.
Meanwhile, at NRO, Mr. Cooke is flabbergasted that Americans aren’t in the streets protesting (peacefully, just like BLM did). Why aren’t they calling members of Congress to demand that it stop? What Democrats are trying to do right now is nothing short of catastrophic, Cooke writes.
The president’s approval rating is around 43 percent — and dropping. His party holds a 50–50 Senate, it has a cushion of just three seats in the House of Representatives, and it enjoys no obvious mandate beyond “not being Donald Trump.” We are not in the middle of a recession, or a crisis, or a war. And, in the last 18 months alone, we have spent an extra $6 trillion on top of an already-bloated budget — a sum that, when adjusted for inflation, comes to more than one-and-a-half times what we spent on World War II.
There Is No Money Left
We’ve spent all the money. It is gone, laments Mr. Cooke.
This year, if we do nothing at all except honor our existing commitments, we are going to spend $3.1 trillion that we don’t have. Next year — again, if we do nothing at all beyond what we’re already committed to — we are going to spend another $1.1 trillion that we don’t have. The year after that, we are going to spend another $1.1 trillion; the year after that, another $1.1 trillion; and so on and so forth, until, eventually, we collapse under the weight of our own contradictions.
In Need of Intervention
- Where are the levelheaded types who can see more than a week into the future?
- Where are the parents looking out for their children?
- Where are the people who, unlike our government, remain capable of elementary arithmetic? Do they have something better to do?
To read the accounts of the current infighting among congressional Democrats is to suspect that many within the party know deep down that the plan they are being asked to support is preposterous in the extreme. Where are the people helping them to see sense? Have they all just given up, too?
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