Diary

Why the Gang of 12 Could Be a Good Thing

Although bipartisanship and compromise in Washington seems to be defined as Republicans agreeing to eat and enjoy the crap sandwich that the Democrats put together, I believe that this particular arrangement is advantageous to taking another step on the road out of the financial mire.

I am working under the premise, however, that the Committee is constitutionally prohibited from raising taxes (or more precisely, revenue). This follows from Article I, Section 7:

All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

The Committee is organized as a Joint Committee of both House members and Senators, and their results will not be a pure House concoction, hence taxes or ‘revenues’ are illegal.

Since revenues cannot be raised, cuts are the only alternative. Although the Democrats will want to cut defense, the cost of entitlements will quickly surface, including (gulp…) Obamacare, whose costs are estimated at ‘between 2.5 and 3 trillion over 10 years’ (twice the cuts required), not including the consequences on businesses.

Immediate repeal of Obamacare is unlikely, as the GROFAZ would be eating a large slice of humble pie. But at the very least the debate would be forced where we want it, that is, if the country is not to become another Greece.