Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Senate GOP Fiscal Conservatism Is Officially Dead

And that of House Republicans is almost certain to follow.

On a vote today to reinstitute "pay-as-you-go" rules to the FY2006 budget, only 5 Republicans voted for the fiscally conservative supplemental measure improvement to the 2006 budget proposed by Feingold (D-WI). It is important to note that this was not a strictly partisan effort, as during deliberations, Senator Chafee of Rhode Island rose in support of the amendment.

In a fashion we ought to be requiring of the Democrats more often, all Senators of the minority party voted for the amendment, along with Jeffords (I-VT) and 5 Republicans:
  • McCain (AZ)
  • Chafee (RI)
  • Collins (ME)
  • Snowe (ME)
  • Voinovich (OH)
The full vote figures and breakdowns are available here. Perhaps the most interesting thing concerning this vote is that during the deliberations a number of Republicans noted with pride that they had forced Clinton into abiding with PAYGO rules in his administration.

Senator Conrad of North Dakota did some great work in creating charts and figures illustrating the problems that await us now that the Republicans will be capable of continuing their reckless spending. I do not know if Conrad's visuals are publicly available, but I will be contacting his staff soon to try to get copies, in which case I will provide them to all ASZ readers.

I believe it was also Conrad (I may be mistaken) who coined a new description of GOP fiscal behavior. Where Democratic fiscal policy has been labelled as "tax and spend", the new term for Republicans is "borrow and spend". At least the Dems made sure they had the money first, usually.

How ironic that the GOP pushed the bankruptcy bill through (with the help of some turncoat Democrats) in order to punish people for what they termed "reckless spending habits". Its unfortunate that these Senators may possibly be dead when the most drastic potential effects of this runaway deficit spending pattern take hold.

The children are the future... but is the future bright or dim?