The Budget Control Act of 2011 may have been an excellent Bill at the time it was signed into law, but that was then and this is now. The Bill as of Feb. 23, 2013 has become an albatross around the neck of the President as well as both the Senate and the House. The Bill came about as a challenge to Congress to come up with some concrete proposals to cut the deficit by the end of 2011. When the Simpson-Bowles Committee was unable to offer solutions to the looming financial woes of the nation, this law was enacted to force cuts in order to solve the problem before the cuts take effect.
Even though the law was seen as, “Merely kicking the can down the road,” the law passed both houses and was signed into law by the president. Rather than work on a solution 2 weeks before the deadline of Feb. 28, 2013, the House went into recess and the President went golfing with Tiger Woods. A casual observer of politics is aware that all Bills involving budgetary language must originate in the House. The President can make recommendations but without dialogue with the House it is futile at best to do the House’s work for them.
Here we are less than 1 week before mandatory cuts are scheduled to take effect and instead of coming up with solutions members of the House and Senate are posturing to see who will get the blame for the cuts. The Junior Senator from Kentucky Rand Paul went to Fox News on Feb. 22 to lay the blame squarely at the President’s feet. His comments would make you wonder why someone who obviously feels that the government should play little to no role in the lives of its citizens would waste time by going into government.
The video embedded in this article is an accurate account of what Rand Paul said. The Senator from Kentucky obviously doesn't realize that local governments in his state rely on federal dollars. There are several military bases in his state which support local communities and keeps revenue flowing especially in a bad economy. The immediate cut of $46 billion to take place March 1, 2013 will not only devastate his state but will have a lasting effect on communities across the entire nation.
The name given to these mandatory cuts has come to be known as “Sequester.” That’s a cute name as opposed to the name “Austerity” which basically means to cut, cut, and cut.
Juanita Ervin of Northern California says:
"The GOP leadership who are trying to appease the Tea Party wing of their Caucus is to blame for the Sequester. The GOP will claim victory in a game of "Chicken" against President Obama saying they didn't raise taxes. Eventually, sometime in March/April, enough of the GOP Reps who don't live in a Tea Party district will vote for a sensible compromise bill and pass it."
Whether there will be an eleventh hour compromise as the custom has become, or whether the proverbial can will be kicked even further down the road is left to be seen. But one thing has become abundantly clear. The Republican Party for 4 years did nothing but obstruct any meaningful solutions to the problems we are facing as a nation. The re-election of Barack Obama has done nothing to change their stance against him or his policies. Until the “good of the country" is placed above partisan politics, we will have to watch and wait to see if there are any adults in Congress. Or has governance become a sport where citizens cheer for their side regardless how dumb or how stupid their ideas are.
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