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Monday, February 21, 2011

Budget Leadership: Why it is not cynical to demand GOP-Tea pony up

Shorthand: You bring the rhetoric, you bring the results.

The GOP-Tea re-interpreted their election win as a mandate, not just to continue saying "no", but on the proposition that no tax increases were required, either long or short term. (To be fair, Obama did some of this too, but he and his party didn't win the election and no longer have control of the purse).

So, they immediately passed hundreds of billions in tax cuts (again), in a potential repeat of Bush-43's year-after-year of budget disasters.

Compare what is going on at the State level under GOP-Tea leadership. Although I do not know what was paid for in the special session (word is that it was tax relief for corporations), the picture repeats itself in broad terms, i.e. debt-spend and then shout, "debt-crisis":

via Ezra Klein:

Update: I've been persuaded that the surplus-to-deficit picture is more complicated that I initially understood.

The budget report is working with two time periods simultaneously: 2010-2011, and then 2011-13. The $130 million deficit now projected for 2011 isn't the fault of the tax breaks passed during Walker's special session, though his special session created about $120 million in deficit spending between 2011 and 2013 -- and perhaps more than that, if his policies are extended.

That is to say, the deficit spending he created in his special session is about equal to the deficit Wisconsin faces this year, but it's not technically correct to say that Walker created 2011's deficit. Rather, he added $120 million to the 2011-2013 deficits, and perhaps more in the years after that.