John Madden will tell you the best defense is a good offense.
The Democrats seem to get that. In the face of a $1.7 trillion deficit this year alone, the Dems have succeeded in containing the budget debate to the “draconian” measure of cutting a miniscule $300 million from Planned Parenthood or <gasp> $6 million from the National Endowment for the Arts. Dems are running Madden’s playbook of ball control and are running out the clock.
Boehner, Ryan, and McConnell need to change the narrative and get back on offense.
Stop defending a paltry $62 billion for this year in cuts and start talking about $1.7 trillion. Move the focus off of Planned Parenthood and shift it to the $8 trillion deficit over the next ten years. Come at Reid and Pelosi with an all-out blitz and demand they explain why our National Debt of $23 trillion ten years out won’t implode our economy and create a debt crisis that makes Greece look like a minor hiccup. It’s time to start talking in terms of trillions – not millions or billions. If your team is down 14 points in the fourth quarter, playing for a field goal won’t get it done.
Stop using the tired, worn-out phrase “mortgaging our children’s future” and turn up the intensity with terms like “debt crisis”, “insolvency”, or “catastrophe.” Make the Dems defend their proposal that will run the debt up to a level requiring half of the country’s revenue be used to service that debt. Hit ‘em hard, hit ‘em fast, and keep pounding. Point out that printing so much money combined with a collapsing U.S. Dollar will ignite a prolonged period of hyper-inflation where consumers will be paying $20 for a tube of toothpaste, and let the Dems refute it. Or the price of imported oil – when measured in U.S. Dollars – will double or triple or quadruple sending gasoline prices to $8 per gallon – or higher since they’ve shut off much of our domestic drilling.
The Republicans committed a huge tactical blunder when they opened the debate with a mere $100 billion. That’s a tiny number in the context of a $1.7 trillion deficit this year and $8 trillion over ten years. But more importantly, it has set the tone for 2012 (and beyond) budget battles by having the debate centered around a few billion here and a few billion there. Republicans need to think big, talk big, and act big. If $100 billion is igniting a knock-down, drag-out fight in Congress, then one can only imagine what will happen when Republicans propose real spending reductions that talks in terms of trillions.
John Madden is right. And John Madden is a winner.