7 Billion
Econ 24-1: Freshman Seminar: Understanding the Lesser Depression: Readings for October 28, 2011

There Is No Point in Trying to Negotiate Any "Grand Budget Compromise"

Robert Greenstein, Richard Kogan and Paul N. Van de Water write:

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: The new deficit-reduction plan from a majority of Democrats on the congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (the "supercommittee") marks a dramatic departure from traditional Democratic positions — and actually stands well to the right of plans by the co-chairs of the bipartisan Bowles-Simpson commission and the Senate's "Gang of Six," and even further to the right of the plan by the bipartisan Rivlin-Domenici commission. The Democratic plan contains substantially smaller revenue increases than those bipartisan proposals while, for example, containing significantly deeper cuts in Medicare and Medicaid than the Bowles-Simpson plan. The Democratic plan features a substantially higher ratio of spending cuts to revenue increases than any of the bipartisan plans…

You can't negotiate without a negotiating partner. When the Democrats get--reliable--majorities in both houses, they can impose a long-run government budget solution. Until then there is no point in trying until Republican legislators are willing to come to the table.

That is not rocket science. That is kindergarten tiddlywinks.