Progressive Caucus Throwing a Hissy Fit Over Inability to Spend Our Money

Asinine. It is a word I don’t get to break out nearly enough. But there is simply no other way to describe this

Liberal House Democrats say they’ ve been betrayed by their conservative Blue Dog colleagues.

Months after shelving their doubts and helping Blue Dog Democrats get their signature issue of statutory pay-as-you-go language signed into law, some liberals say conservative Democrats have reneged on their side of the agreement.

Counting all the stupid things in just those two sentences is like trying to pick the worst hair band from the 1980s – it’s hard, but only because there is so many of them. Nevertheless, I shall press on and do my best to point how utterly ridiculous Democrats’ latest calls for more spending are.

First off, betrayed. Strong word. Typically used in association with traitors, turncoats, and other scum. In this case, “betray,” is being used to describe someone who is actually sticking up for the good of the nation. It is commonly accepted that our lack of fiscal frugality is leading us down an unsustainable economic path. Unless, we hold Greece to be a role model we’ve got to cut down on cutting checks. So “betray” is really in the eyes of the beholder here. The fiscally conservative Democrats, a rare breed in this day in age, may have been disloyal to their free-spending liberal brethren, but in the end, their devotion to sanity may save our nation’s bottom line.

Second, Democrats had to “shelve their doubts” about pay-as-you-go. Translation: we really want to spend a lot of taxpayer (and Chinese) money this term and we’re more than a little skeptical about having to find savings elsewhere. Their apparent detest for saving (or their simple inability to do math) tells me that many liberal Democrats left the task of balancing their personal checkbooks to their spouse. Did they forget the words of their fearless leader, who in his State of the Union made it a point to say,

“[F]amilies across the country are tightening their belts and making tough decisions. The federal government should do the same.”

The camera didn’t catch it but Liberal Democrats in the room could likely be seen shaking their heads whispering “not true.”

Third, Democrats are saying that the Blue Dogs reneged on their side of the agreement. In this instance “their side of the agreement” can be substituted with “the Democrats’ plan to label everything as an ‘emergency measure’ so they can get around pay-as-you-go laws.” The subtle change in definition is backed up by a Rep. Paul Grijalva (D-AZ), co-chairman of the Progressive Caucus, who told The Hill

“In my mind, disappointment is a good word, because there was indeed, I thought, an understanding. . . I think the understanding was that once pay-go was in place, we’d be moving on to making proper investments in things like healthcare and education, and that we’d be given the benefit of the doubt when it came to making investments in those priorities.”

So lemme get this straight. Blue Dogs negotiated a deal where they would push for a Paygo language. In return "progressive" Democrats wanted a promise that they wouldn’t follow that language. Now both sides are upset. Only in Washington!

Fortunately, Blue Dogs appear to be holding their ground. Whether it is an actual concern over the deficit, or merely just a politically astute judgment of a debt-wary electorate, is up for debate. Nevertheless, the spend-happy elements of the Democratic Party had better take note. Pay-as-you-go means what it says. If you want to make one of your spending provisions a budgetary priority, find somewhere to cut. In this regard Republicans are even giving you a leg up. Just take a look at our YouCut proposals. They’re like a weekly Saving Taxpayer Money for Dummies manual.

Better yet. How about we drop the Paygo farce altogether. Drop the notion of spending and making cutting a priority until we get the deficit down to manageable levels. “What, no spending!,” I heard the Democrats yell. Ok. Ok. I know it seems a little crazy. I know you’d be left twiddling your thumbs. But hey, at least your hands would be out of my wallet.

I know this has all fallen on deaf ears, so by all means return to your internal squabbling and finger pointing. Don’t mind us, we’ll be over here working on solutions to the mess you’re creating.

by Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee