Here is an example of the road that small government, Big Liberty Republicans can take to further our aims and hamstring the Democrats.
Obama and the Democrats want to re-install the $21 Billion in Medicare cuts that they cynically claimed as savings in the Health Insurance overhaul, knowing full well that they had no intention of letting those cuts stand. (Reinstalling them has had bi-partisan support in the past.)
Boehner and the GOP leadership are assailing this double-dealing as hypocrisy and injurious to the US deficit; but the first argument is sarcastic and simply scores rhetorical points, and the second is technical and cannot overcome the untenable politics of endangering the lives of flesh-and-blood old people for abstract principles. The GOP is thus reduced to calling for unidentified “cuts” – earning the sobriquet of the “Party of No.”
What Boehner should do instead is make a public offer to Obama and the Democrat majority for true “pay-as-you-go.” We will pass the Medicare Doctors’ Reimbusement, Boehner could say, and in return Obama will abolish the cabinet level Department of Commerce (2009 annual budget – $14 Billion).
Who is going to stand up for some unknown bureaucracy? Immediately it throws the Democrats on the defensive. It makes them either choose what they want, or demonstrate that they are in favor of expanding budgets no matter what the option. Plus, it puts down a marker for Republicans to show the Tea Party and the partisans of smaller government – “You see, we are in favor of shrinking the actual size and scope of this government.”
The Departments of Labor, Energy, Education can be substituted for Commerce if that is Boehner’s taste; or, better yet, they can be the NEXT bargaining chip to offer to pay for Obama’s desperate need to fund his dreams.
Let’s make the beggars start to choose.