We've heard the names of these states mentioned often in the problem with runaway spending in Congress: California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. After the vote on the "fiscal cliff" deal in the U.S. House of Representatives took place, known as "Roll Call 659" of the 112th U.S. Congress, I started realizing that something just was not right. I thought to myself: "After the voters cast their votes for fiscal spending restraint, by returning an overwhelmingly Republican House of Representatives back to Washington, D.C. to place additional control over both taxes and spending in the upcoming 113th Congress, there is definitely a rat in this vote" (over the "fiscal cliff" deal). The U.S. Senate had only approved the deal one day earlier. While the left-leaning "mainstream media" has spent the last day congratulating themselves over the marvelous job that they believe they have done for the American who does not pay income tax each and every year, several things are not being mentioned by these talking heads:
- $4.2 billion in "refundable" Child Tax Credit payments were made to individuals who were not legally authorized to be in the United States in the year 2011. The Child Tax Credit was made "permanent" by the "fiscal cliff" deal passed by Congress. As a "refundable" tax credit, any person, who does not have an income tax payment, can receive a tax refund check as a result of this credit.
- In 2010, the IRS sent $60.4 billion in "refundable" Earned Income Tax Credit Payments to individuals, and in 2011, the IRS estimates that it made $59.5 billion in payments to 26.8 million different individuals and families. Like the Child Tax Credit, the "fiscal cliff" deal makes this taxpayer-funded redistribution of wealth a "permanent" part of our existing Internal Revenue Code, as well as being a payment from the U.S. Treasury to a person who did not have an income tax obligation.
We can go ahead and estimate that the IRS will probably send out, in 2014, at least $65 billion in these "refundable" tax credits, and that number is only expected to climb in the coming years. With that, you can go ahead and add another $80 billion in spending for the food stamp program, which lawmakers committed all Americans to paying for in 2013. And what percentage of the population will receive the lion's share of all this money? Why, it's the same percentage for all three programs: 41% of all spending. The most striking information about all of this new spending that Congress voted for are the states where that 41% is going to be spent. 41% of this spending will take place in only eight states: California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. This is the real rat in the 257-167 final vote total on the "fiscal cliff" deal. 58 of the "yes" votes came from Republicans in the aforementioned states. Here are their names:
Mary Bono Mack
Mario Diaz Balart
In effect, these 58 politicians "sold out" the Republican congressional delegations from the other 42 states in the Union. Never mind the thousands of hours that Republican volunteers put in "on the ground", doing their best attempting to convince voters that a vote for Republicans was a vote for "limited government". In their "yes" votes, these 58 have obligated the rest of us to pay for $145 billion dollars in federal spending for these three government handouts to President Obama's primary constituency for 2013 alone, all so that they could look good shaking hands with the President at the upcoming inauguration on January 20. After the vote in the House, the President went back to what he knows best, which is vacationing in Hawaii, and these 58 Republicans might as well have joined Obama there. For isn't that what they really did? In truth, President Obama could only actually find 27 Republicans who were willing to go along with Senator Reid, and the Democratic party. These 58 Republicans were only drawn to one thing: more government spending on the backs of the rest of America in the other 42 states.
There's no way to know just what these politicians were thinking when they lost their collective minds and approved Obama's "soak the rich" campaign promises. But you can better believe that this $145 billion dollars had a lot to do with it. We have no way to know what other campaign money was promised to these Republicans for supporting President Obama, what influence the President was going to permit each of them to wield with him in the future, or how many of them have been promised positions within his current administration. What is even more incredible is that these 58 simply ignored the will of those that had sent them to Washington in 2010. While many names on the list do not surprise me at all, these 58 simply decided that how they were going to appear in the papers on January 20 appeared to be the most important factor of all in their individual votes on the floor of the House. How can President Obama and the Democrats be defeated at the polls when we have Republicans like these 58 so dead set on defending Washington spending as we have all known it throughout our collective lifetimes? There simply is no better way to win battles in Washington than to co-opt your ideological enemies in the final week of a congressional session.
Republicans, do you really want to build a new and better Republican party? If you're serious about it, then you can start by removing any of these 58 who will still be in office in the 113th Congress, and replacing all of them with Republican faces of color. Take all 58 and replace them all with African and Latino-Americans who want to put America, and not the nations that we are indebted to, first. At that point, at least I can say that the GOP finally took a step to change the way the party looks, and acts, from the inside out, to fundamentally change the Republican party for the better for years to come.