The Worst Budget in American History
A Commentary By Stephen Moore
Is there even one half-sane Democrat that will stand up and denounce the fiscal atrocity of President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion spending bill? Is there not one single patriotic Democrat in the entire country who will speak out? The silence is deafening.
The House Democrats are now rallying behind a budget resolution that calls for a $6.1 trillion single-year budget. When I first came to Washington in 1985, President Ronald Reagan passed the first $1 trillion budget bill. We were all aghast. Now, we are spending six times that amount, and no one blinks an eye.
Even worse, the Biden budget plan would authorize just under $4 trillion of borrowing in one single year. That is more debt than was allowed, adjusting for inflation, to finance the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, the Great Depression, World War I and World War II.
The Democrats plan to use "reconciliation" instructions, which allow the Senate to pass spending and tax bills with only 51 votes in the Senate. They don't need a single Republican vote. Call it the "unity" budget. Sen. Bernie Sanders said Democrats have earned the right to bankrupt the country because Republicans do it.
This bill has very little to do with coronavirus relief. Pelosi has inserted the $15 minimum wage, a $400 billion blue-state bailout to fund leaky government pension programs in states such as California and Illinois, and $130 billion for school funding, even though schools have been closed for 10 months. There is also a $400 per week bonus unemployment benefit that will pay most unemployed workers more money to stay home than go back to work and, of course, billions for the New York subway paid for people living in Nebraska.
We are told this is "urgent" to stave off an economic "crisis." Wait. Congress had already authorized $3.7 trillion in spending in five previous bills last year. The House Budget Republicans reported that there is still $1 trillion of unspent money from those bills. What ever happened to eating your dinner before you get your dessert?
One reason for the mad rush is that Democrats fear the crisis is disappearing right before our eyes. Coronavirus cases and deaths have plunged by more than one-third in the last three weeks, and the vaccine is getting injected into 1 million arms a day, thanks to former President Donald Trump's Operation Warp Speed program. As for the economy, the Wall Street Journal reported that the housing market is red-hot, with prices up 12% over last year. The manufacturing index has hit a five-year high. Unemployment claims are falling, and there are 6.5 million open jobs in America. The stock market has surged to new all-time highs, and in the last quarter, private sector GDP was up a bullish 4.3%.
Does this sound like a crisis? Perhaps in blue-state America, where governors such as Andrew Cuomo of New York and J.B. Pritzker of Illinois have foolishly shuttered their businesses and schools. But the solution to getting back to the rapid growth of the first three Trump years is to open up the state economies and speed up vaccine distributions.
Those solutions cost almost nothing. Instead, Biden insists that the lesson he learned from the failed $830 billion "shovel ready" bill back in 2009 was, "We spent too little." So, he's doubling down. Don't worry about the children and the grandchildren, who will be saddled with the Chinese and Saudi debt repayment. The New Republic recently advised Biden to "spend like crazy."
So, "crazy" is what we are getting. Crazy like driving 80 miles per hour down the highway drunk and wearing a blindfold. So, I repeat: Will some Democrat somewhere please stand up and tell the drunk-with-power Democrats to stop?
I am terrified the answer is no.
Stephen Moore is a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation and an economic consultant with FreedomWorks. He is the co-author of "Trumponomics: Inside the America First Plan to Revive the American Economy." To find out more about Stephen Moore and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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