The real budget battle continues
Many conservatives opposed the continuing resolution because it continued to fund Obamacare and its abuse of religious groups. That is a flaw when appropriations are done on a one package deal rather than on an item by item agenda. If we are going to attack that problem, we have to get away from this type of appropriation........ None of the cuts Obama has put on the table fundamentally reform any of our entitlement programs.
His chained CPI proposal cuts just $127 billion in Social Security spending over ten years … but it also raises taxes by $123 billion!!! No wonder Obama loves it.
His Medicare “means-testing” proposal does not mean fewer government benefits for rich people. It means rich people pay more for the government services they already receive. That is just a tax hike by another name. Furthermore, Medicare already charges higher income seniors higher premiums. Obama’s biggest Medicare “reform” isn’t really even a reform.
Raising the Medicare or Social Security eligibility ages would save a decent amount of money (about $300 billion each over ten years), but neither of those reforms would significantly change how those programs operate.
Bottom line, there is simply no entitlement reform Obama would agree to that would fundamentally shrink the size and scope of the federal government. The best Republicans can hope for is to pair back federal spending around the edges (as the sequester does) while avoiding any new tax hikes at all costs.
That is what yesterday’s CR vote accomplished. It is admittedly a small victory. But hopefully it is one that can be duplicated over the next four years.