Yes. You read that right.
I had to do a double and triple-take myself. WHAT in the blue blazes does one have to do with the other? Here’s McClatchy — a leader in the fake news industry — trying to explain it to us:
Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio have been adamant – the federal debt is way too high and has got to be tamed fast.
Cruz, a Republican from Texas, helped lead the 2013 fight against raising the debt limit, a fight that resulted in a partial government shutdown. Rubio, a Republican from Florida, in announcing his plans for this year, said Tuesday that “one major thing that will cost us jobs and hamstring our economy is our rising debt.”
So why did they and 49 other Senate Republicans vote this week to consider a measure that says the “appropriate levels of the public debt” would rise from the current $20 trillion to $29.1 trillion in 10 years? And predict deficits of $1 trillion by the end of that period? […]
Nope. In fact, THAT is the OPPOSITE of appropriate. MORE:
[…] Because, they said, it’s the first procedural step in repealing Obamacare. And they insisted the number is meaningless.
*Oh, never mind that number that shows up as the balance in my checking account or that number that shows my total net worth. They’re meaningless. (Just give me the keys to that Ferrari.)*
How scary is it that we have elected leaders so willing to pass stuff and not pay a bit of attention to what it actually says? (Well, it’s already done so much with the respective party platforms.)
[…] “The resolution is designed for one purpose only, to serve as a vehicle to repeal Obamacare,” said Cruz.
The wink at the apparently ballooning debt was very different from how conservative Republicans have proceeded in recent years. They made debt reduction a centerpiece of presidential campaigns. And they vowed to never give in, even defying their own party leaders.
So what about the big debt? That will come later, Cruz said. “We intend to have a vigorous debate later this summer on a budget for the next fiscal year that addresses the enormous threat our deficit and debt poses,” Cruz said.
Rubio was not available for comment. His press secretary, Matt Wolking, pointed to a letter Cruz, Rubio and Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, wrote to Senate Republican leaders just before the vote.
“Our votes in favor of the ‘Obamacare repeal resolution’ do not indicate in any way our support for the revenue, spending, and deficit numbers therein, nor for the use of those numbers as the basis for future federal budgets,” the letter read.
They note that the $29 trillion debt total is simply a number assuming all current spending levels continue – and does not include the full impact of repealing the health care law. That would come later, but this resolution allows several pieces of repeal to require only 51 Senate votes to move forward, instead of the 60 usually needed to limit debate. Republicans control 52 of the Senate’s 100 seats.
In the past, Cruz has had a different take on debt strategy. In October 2015, when the Senate was mired in one of its frequent fights over whether to raise the debt limit, Cruz was highly critical of Republican leaders.
“Unfortunately Republican leadership approaches every battle preemptively surrendering, saying we can do nothing,” he told Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody.
But voting for repeal and its huge presumed debt was different, Cruz told McClatchy this week. “We do not accept the underlying assumptions,” he argued, that lead to such a big debt.
[…]What the public understands is that “$20 trillion is not an appropriate level of debt,” said Steve Ellis, president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a Washington budget research group.
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., was the lone Republican to oppose considering the repeal bill when the Senate voted 51-48 to proceed Wednesday. “Because we’re in a hurry, we can’t be bothered,” he said sarcastically. “It’s just numbers, I was told again and again … and yet the legislation says it is a budget.”
“Lone Republican.” So, that means Tillis, Burr, Graham-nesty and Scott were all in on this charlie-foxtrot.
He asked, “Why don’t we put a vision into the budget that represents what Republicans say they are for?”
Paul hopes the House of Representatives will be more receptive to his plea. He met Thursday with members of the House Freedom Caucus, a group of about 40 conservative lawmakers.
Many seemed sympathetic to his concern, and plan to meet Monday night for further talks. One idea, said chairman Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., could be to vote on repeal and replacement at the same time.
I HOPE somebody has a good explanation for this. (It’s looking kind of like that time on Cheers when Cliff repaid a debt to Norm with a personal check for ONE KAZILLION DOLLARS. You’re going along with a transaction that you KNOW can’t ever be paid for.) I know there are quite a few eyes among our congressional delegation reading this site every day. (I KNOW Mark Meadows, chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, reads this site.) I’ll give you all the space you could want or need to try and explain WHY shoving our country deeper into the red is a key component in the process of euthanizing ObamaCare.