Why Dems Should Push Balancing the Federal Budget

One of the positive legacies of the Clinton-Gore administration was the repositioning of the Democratic party as the party of fiscal responsibility. The efforts of that administration on balancing the budget and generating the surplus, and the budget busting efforts of Bush, have led to the GOP having a negative image regarding fiscal responsibility.
In a recent poll by Democracy Corps, found at http://www.democracycorps.com/reports/index.html, under January reports, Federal budget deficits ranked third when people were asked to list negative traits of the GOP.

This has given the Democratic Party the opportunity to seize the high ground on fiscal responsibility. The reasons why it should do so are as follows:

  1. Bush's plans depend on running Federal deficits. His tax plans, his war in Iraq, and his Social Security "reforms" depend on the Federal Government borrowing billions to finance the government as opposed to raising taxes or cutting spending. If politically it was hard to continue running up trillions in debt his ability to push these plans would be seriously compromised.

  2. Federal interest payments amount to a large transfer of wealth from working Americans to the investor class. Every dollar that goes to interest payments is one less dollar available for Federal programs or for reducing taxes on working Americans.

  3. Deficit spending is immoral in that Bush is simply transferring to our children and grandchildren the cost of paying for his agenda.

  4. It is simple to understand. In politics the politician who can explain his/her position in 12 seconds has a distinct advantage over those who cannot.

  5. It provides a unifying theme against both Bush's tax plans and his Social Security plans.

What is left is the will to implement the plan. Dems should push for a balanced budget amendment to the constitution and see what Republicans do. My guess is that they will not pass it and we then have an issue.

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Comments

2 Comments

Brother, you need to post this again
Its kinda sad that this central topic is overlooked for the mini-horserace of the DNC chair. If America was a person, it would be bleeding to death. Does anyone want to stauch the flow? Not hardly. Bush promises to cut the deficit in half by 2009. I'd eliminate it in one year! If the democrats fashion a balanced budget (the details are irrelevant to me) then they can use it to brow beat the president.

Its that magic thing called an alternative. All the democrats have right now is whining. Sure, I'd be prepared for the GOP to take up that kind of courageous offer. Why wouldn't they? But such a bi-partisan action initiated by the democrats is a long term reinvestment in the trust that the party has lost.

by Paul Goodman 2005-02-04 10:04AM | 0 recs
Is there a quick-and-easy way to explain
how the tax cuts increased the burden on the middle class? Without that you have a hard time selling a balanced budget without obliterating the social programs the Reeps are now targeting.
by catastrophile 2005-02-04 11:53AM | 0 recs

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