Democratic Definition of Fiscal Responsibility

Lisa Johnson is a Democrat who is running for the Utah State House of Representatives. On her website, Mrs. Johnson has a list of issues that she feels are important. One of which is fiscal responsibility that she feels involve three key components: wisely managing resources, preparing for the future, and avoiding debt.

The Obama-Biden ticket should talk with Mrs. Johnson.

During the presidential debate, the moderator, Jim Lehrer asked the candidates the following questions:

“As president, as a result of whatever financial rescue plan comes about and the billion, $700 billion, whatever it is it’s going to cost, what are you going to have to give up, in terms of the priorities that you would bring as president of the United States, as a result of having to pay for the financial rescue plan?”

Barack Obama’s response? “Well, there are a range of things that are probably going to have to be delayed. We don’t yet know what our tax revenues are going to be. The economy is slowing down, so it’s hard to anticipate right now what the budget is going to look like next year. But there’s no doubt that we’re not going to be able to do everything that I think needs to be done. There are some things that I think have to be done. “

Obama then went on to list out the programs that were untouchable which would make a very nice MasterCard commercial:

Investment in alternative energy: $15 billion

Fix our health care system: $65 billion

Investment in science and technology: $18 billion

Rebuild our infrastructure: $6 billion

New electricity grid: I’ll assume this is included in the alternative energy investment

Ability to list over $100 billion of spending when asked what he would give up: Priceless

You can tell that the looming economic crisis is important as the same question was asked of the vice-presidential candidates:

Ifill: “What promises — given the events of the week, the bailout plan, all of this, what promises have you and your campaigns made to the American people that you’re not going to be able to keep?”

Biden: “Well, the one thing we might have to slow down is a commitment we made to double foreign assistance. We’ll probably have to slow that down.”

Biden followed that by saying they wouldn’t support the tax cuts for people making over $250K, they wouldn’t support corporate tax cuts and they wouldn’t support tax cuts for ExxonMobil. Biden finished his response by stating the same list of untouchable programs that Obama has listed: energy policy, education, and health care for Americans.

If this “financial crisis is the worst since the Great Depression,” as Obama has recently stated, you would think that either he or Joe Biden would be able to come up with at least one program they would consider eliminating. I would be interested to understand their definition of “fiscal responsibility.” Oh course this is the same team that has defined wealth-redistribution as “fairness.”