What is wrong with Democrats? Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. It is clear we continue to think about those with capital, first. To hell with the poor and the middle-class.
Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Mark Warner (D-VA), Tim Kaine (D-VA), and Chris Coons (D-DE) should know better. If we want the people who do not generally vote to have a reason to vote we must give them something to vote for now. Austerity is not the answer. Rebalancing the budget on their suffering is not the answer.
Common Dreams reported the following disconcerting story. The complicity of some Democratic senators is appalling. The thing is, they can fly under the radar as they sell out their natural base as the corporate mainstream media cover the Trump circus ad nauseam.
A handful of Senate Democrats joined forces with Republicans last week to advance sweeping budget legislation that would establish an “automatic deficit-reduction process” that could trigger trillions of dollars in cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, and other social programs—and potentially hobble the agenda of the next president.
The Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act (S.2765), authored by Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), passed out of the Senate Budget Committee on November 6. The legislation is co-sponsored by five members of the Senate Democratic caucus: Whitehouse, Mark Warner (Va.), Tim Kaine (Va.), Chris Coons (Del.), and Angus King (I-Maine).
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, issued a statement last week opposing the legislation and warning it “could be used by Republicans to unilaterally cut programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and nutrition assistance—all supposedly to reduce the deficit.”
“This new proposed process comes less than two years after Republicans on this Committee showed no hesitation in adding $2 trillion to the deficit in order to pass the Trump tax cuts for the wealthiest families and the most profitable corporations in America,” said Sanders.
As The American Prospect‘s David Dayen noted Thursday, passage of S.2765 would severely hamstring Sanders’ ability to implement his agenda should he win the White House in 2020.
“If a Democrat wants to extend free public college to all Americans, or move toward a universal healthcare system, or amass resources to fight the climate crisis,” Dayen wrote, “they’re going to run into the deficit scolds, the ‘No, We Can’t’ brigade. Republicans like Enzi want to build that ‘No, We Can’t’ presumption into the budget process itself. It makes no sense for Democrats to help them.”
Title IV of S.2765, Dayen explained, “would create an automatic process to slash potentially trillions of dollars from programs like Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, and Obamacare subsidies.”
A budget resolution would pass in the first year of a new Congress. The next year, on February 15, the Congressional Budget Office would compare the debt/GDP ratio projected in the budget resolution to a new projection that incorporates the evidence of the past year. If the new projection exceeds the budget resolution’s, that would trigger a special, automatic ‘reconciliation’ process to effectively wipe out that gap.
For the most part, cuts would have to come out of mandatory programs, like health spending and nutrition assistance for the poor. (Social Security is protected from reconciliation and could not be cut.)…
[T]he past three budget resolutions passed by Congress would have, under this bill, forced automatic reconciliation deficit cuts with a staggering total of $9.5 trillion.
In an analysis of S.2765 last week, Richard Kogan and Joel Friedman of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities wrote that the bill amounts to “automatic austerity” that could “drive harmful budget cuts” and severely hamper the nation’s ability to respond to an economic downturn.
Again, what are the poor and middle-class to think? When passing a $2 trillion tax cut scam no one was asking for offsets. Talking to many the answer is they justifiably see no point in voting in that they see two parties screwing them. One who initiates the pain. The other, the one who acquiesces.