Democratic “balanced approach”: $1.5 trillion in tax hikes

posted at 8:01 am on March 14, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

This came out late last night — at least here in Rome — and so I missed a couple of e-mails on this rather momentous occasion when Senate Democrats finally produce a budget.  It’s the first time in four years, and now it’s easy to see why they didn’t want to put their plans on paper.  The FY2014 plan being moved in committee by new Budget Committee chair Patty Murray will hike taxed by $1.5 trillion — and spend even more than we do now.

A Republican staffer on Capitol Hill sent me this chart, along with an explanation:

budget-murray-chart

The Senate Democrats’ budget claims to increase taxes $975B over the next ten years.  They are actually hiding an additional $500 billion in tax proposals buried in their 113 page budget document (“Restoring the Promise of American Opportunity”).

First, at the top of page 8 they propose $100 billion dollars for a “jobs and infrastructure” package that “is fully paid for by eliminating loopholes and cutting wasteful spending in the tax code . . . “.  This provision is hidden in the resolution itself as a so-called reserve fund (section 308).

Second, in the middle of page 21 they propose that “The budget replaces sequestration using the following equal mix of responsible spending cuts and new revenue . . . .”  This includes “$480 billion in new revenue raised by closing loopholes and ending wasteful deductions . . . .”  This is implemented through a reserve fund in the resolution (section 403).

Finally, on page 66 the budget document says “The Senate Budget calls for deficit reduction of $975 billion to be achieve eliminate loopholes and cutting unfair and inefficient spending in the tax code . . . .”  This is the amount the Chairman refers to and the resolution directs the Finance Committee to provide this amount.  However, this $975 billion includes $164 billion to extend refundable tax credits that were originally adopted in the stimulus bill.  These tax credits are actually checks sent to people that do not owe income tax and, therefore, according to CBO, are increases in spending.  Subtracting the $164 billion from $975 billion leaves a $923 billion tax hike (which is then added to the additional $580).

That’s two-and-a-half times larger than the tax hike Democrats won over the New Year break.  Is that matched by cuts in spending, for a balanced approach to deficit reform?  Not even close.  According to another Republican staffer, spending increases every year over the projected ten-year window, far outpacing anticipated inflation:

Compared to the Senate Budget Committee Republican baseline (which is CBO baseline, without extension of Sandy Emergency category funding and with CBO’s alternative OCO path (to eliminate possibility of phony war and disaster relief savings), Murray’s budget spends a total of $207 billion more than the SBC baseline outlays over 10 years.  The SBC baseline is a more accurate one because it’s less vulnerable to gimmicks, assumes roughly $46.2 trillion in spending over ten years.  (this baseline is essentially Paul Ryan’s baseline as well, fyi.)  Murray’s own budget says it spends $46.4 trillion over the ten year window. …

Murray’s budget spends $2.2 trillion more in 2023 (the last year of the budget window) than the 2013 levels – a 62% increase (significantly outpacing inflation).

Needless to say, this is a dead letter among Republicans:

The “budget would raise taxes on Americans by $1.5 trillion to pay for increased spending … on top of the $1.7 trillion in tax increases already signed into law during the Obama administration,” said a statement from Sen. John Thune, the chairman of the Senate Republican Conference.

“The policies of big spending and big government have led to a dismal average economic growth rate of just 0.8 percent over the past four years. It’s time to grow the economy, not the government,” he added. …

Sen. Jeff Sessions, the senior Republican on Murray’s budget committee, pitched a slower-growing, economy-boosting budget plan that would help people manage their own lives.

“We need to grow the economy, not the government,” he said in a statement. “We must act to create more jobs and better pay. And we can do it without adding to the debt,” he said, before ticking off a series of optimist-sounding measures.

“Pro-growth tax reform, more domestic energy production, make the welfare office a place to restart lives … enforce immigration law to ensure fairness for American workers, eliminate every burdensome federal regulation that isn’t needed and that destroys jobs [and] balance the federal budget,” Sessions said in a press statement.

What about President Balanced Approach?  Oh, he likes the Murray budget:

“The Senate Democratic budget is a concrete plan that will grow our economy and shrink our deficits in a balanced way, consistent with the [p]resident’s belief that our economy grows best from the middle-out, not the top-down, while reducing the debt as a share of the economy,” said the statement.

For more fun, try to count how many times Jay Carney said the word “balance” in his press briefing yesterday, and then reconcile that with what we see in the Senate Democrat plan.  Maybe by “balance,” Democrats mean “making up for lost time on tax hikes.”


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Obama uses the word economy when he means government.

ctmom on March 14, 2013 at 8:07 AM

Be thankful the Democrats (aka American Communists) still have some that are rich to demonize.

Because at some point……..it will be private property rights.

PappyD61 on March 14, 2013 at 8:08 AM

Absolute idiots . . . acceptable only to the parasitic class.

rplat on March 14, 2013 at 8:15 AM

This ought to be interesting. How many dem senators are up for re-election? We’re going to see just how socialized this nation has become.

Put it up for a vote Harry.

DanMan on March 14, 2013 at 8:16 AM

It is ‘balanced’ because $1.5 T tax hikes will be paid mostly from the 47% (number who voted Romney).

‘Dems in Gubmint and Congress’ will be exempted from it, and everyday ‘Dems’ will get subsidized.

Sir Napsalot on March 14, 2013 at 8:17 AM

It’s the first time in four years, and now it’s easy to see why they didn’t want to put their plans on paper. The FY2014 plan being moved in committee

The last time Democrats passed a budget was on March 11, 2009 for Fiscal Year 2009. The FY 2009 budget was pasesd by the Nancy Pelosi-led House, the Harry Reid-led Senate, and signed by pResident Obama. A Democrat tri-fecta, but Dems still claim that FY 2009 deficit spending was “Bush’s fault”.

Democrats failed to pass a budget for FY 2010.
Democrats failed to pass a budget for FY 2011.
Democrats failed to pass a budget for FY 2012.
Democrats failed to pass a budget for FY 2013.

What they are proposing now is for FY 2014.

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 8:19 AM

The terrorist-loving Murray has entitled her plan “Restoring the Promise of American Opportunity.” The slut is in her fourth term. Why the hell do we pay attention to a whore who let American opportunity slip away in the first place.

Happy Nomad on March 14, 2013 at 8:20 AM

funny isn’t it? how in obamaland the “middle class” is comprised of people getting welfare.
you no longer have to be employed to be in obama’s “middle class”.

an obamaphone in every home is the sign of a thriving economy, so sayeth his majestesy, president foodstamp.

renalin on March 14, 2013 at 8:21 AM

A tax hike of $1.5 trillion over ten years. Yeah, right. This time next year, they’ll be wanting another $1.7 trillion in increases to be spread over ten more years (for the mathematically-handicapped, that means $3.2 trillion more in taxes over 11 years). Guaranteed, we’ll be revisiting this situation next January.

Liam on March 14, 2013 at 8:22 AM

This came out late last night — at least here in Rome

It must be somewhat surreal sitting in Rome and, yet, getting updates on domestic politics. At least the Cardinals had the good grace to get a new Pope before their conclave stepped on the news cycle that includes all the CPAC speakers.

Happy Nomad on March 14, 2013 at 8:22 AM

Democrats and the President just passed a tax increase on the “rich” in January. That tax increase has curiously devastated almost every American who pays taxes. I suppose we are we all “rich” now?

So what is Democrats proposal after almost five years without the Senate passing a budget? More taxes, a “reduction” in the deficit and more funny accounting to make the number work. Oh and zero concrete proposals to reduce spending.

The president and Democrats have devastated our economy. They have done absolutely zero to provide relief from this economic malaise. In fact, what they have done wasted time, money and effort in the name of politics- all at our expense.

The incompetence is astounding. It’s about time we sent Democrats back into to the Senate minority so the recovery can begin.

Marcus Traianus on March 14, 2013 at 8:23 AM

$1,500,000,000,000…

carefully “balanced” on the backs of our children.

:(

itsnotaboutme on March 14, 2013 at 8:27 AM

Isn’t this what the “people”voted for?

docflash on March 14, 2013 at 8:28 AM

This is what I was talking about. They are gutting the military at all levels and if those specific reductions aren’t yet hitting they’re also causing many units to impose pre-sequester actions to reduce costs that are already paralyzing their training and operations.

And they still raise taxes, that are sure to even hit the middle
class, because the military is the only ones they can actually reduce the budget on? Everyone else still sees their entitlements go up? Well, that didn’t quite pan out.

Thank you, you entitlement addicted losers who can’t take care of even your simplist needs. And thank you obama voters, you’re putting the final nails in this once great country’s lid.

hawkdriver on March 14, 2013 at 8:29 AM

So who will be the guests in the background when Obama speaks pushing this bill?

Children?
Grandmas?

Electrongod on March 14, 2013 at 8:33 AM

The thing assumes a growth in the economy that never gets below 4.5% (and only that low in the out years)…for the next 10 years.

Captain Dumb*** might want to get it past 0.1% before he promises the dumbest he can instantly hit 6%.

MNHawk on March 14, 2013 at 8:40 AM

$3.2 trillion in new taxes and still no balance.

Steve Eggleston on March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Electrongod on March 14, 2013 at 8:33 AM

It won’t be the military.

hawkdriver on March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

I don’t know anything about economics and won’t pretend to, but this to me looks like a joke. They’re not being serious, they’re playing games. Bait and switch. Tax the rich, spend all their money on worthless programs. It’s almost as though they said “Ok, we got your budget for you right here, watch this!” And then threw a bunch of horse crap on a plate and expect Americans to just eat it. No questions asked. JUST EAT IT, citizens! Washington is insane. I don’t know if there’s any hope for them to get anything done anymore. I wish Romney were president, at least he knows how much trouble we’re in, these people don’t have a clue.

scalleywag on March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

We already raised taxes. Record taxes were collected this past year.

And yet, the same spending problem persists.

It’s almost as if the non-existent problem of ‘too little tax revenue’ is completely different than that of the government’s crackhead-like addiction to ever-expanding spending.

Good Lt on March 14, 2013 at 8:42 AM

So who will be the guests in the background when Obama speaks pushing this bill?

Children?
Grandmas?

Electrongod on March 14, 2013 at 8:33 AM

Horses and bulls. They provided the content of this new “budget”.

scalleywag on March 14, 2013 at 8:43 AM

“I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”
Obama, Feb,2009

Liar!!!

Sticky Wicket on March 14, 2013 at 8:52 AM

Insatiable thirst for buying votes and getting reelected, focused like a laser beam.

I was going to say they lack just plain old common sense, but that isn’t it. They are common thieves.

fogw on March 14, 2013 at 8:56 AM

Democratic “balanced approach”: $1.5 trillion in tax hikes

The Democratic “balanced approach” has never been about a balanced budget, nor about balancing tax increases with cuts. The Democratic “balanced approach” has always been about raising taxes on the “wealthy”.

Just look back to early December and this Hot Air post:

a balanced approach that protects the middle class and asks the wealthiest Americans to pay slightly higher tax rates.

They already got what they claimed they were seeking… an end to the Bush Tax Cuts for “the wealthy”. (So while the Dems like to claim that Republicans only want “tax cuts for the rich”, the reality is that the Republicans gave tax cuts to everyone who paid taxes, while the Democrats gave tax hikes to the rich.)

Take a look at the following IRS numbers (start at cell F183 and go down the column)…

Total income tax share (percentage):

In 1986 (the 6th year of Ronald Reagan Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 54.69%

In 1989 (1st Year of George H. W. Bush Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 55.78%

In 1993 (1st Year of Bill Clinton Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 59.24%

In 1997 (5th Year of Bill Clinton Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 63.20%

In 2001 (1st Year of George W. Bush Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 64.89%

In 2005 (5th Year of George W. Bush Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 70.30%

In 2009 (1st Year of Barack Obama Presidency), the top 10% paid a Total Income Tax share of 70.47%

The numbers stop at 2009, but we know tha in 2013, the tax rates for those in the top 10% went up, so their percentage share of the total tax burden is very likely to go up.

It would not surprise me if we are approaching 75% of the total income tax burden is paid by the top 10% of income earners… when just a generation ago it was 55% of the total income tax burden.

=============================================
A “balanced approach” does not mean constantly shifting more and more of the tax burden onto 10% of our citizens.
=============================================

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 9:02 AM

I don’t know anything about economics and won’t pretend to, but this to me looks like a joke. They’re not being serious, they’re playing games. Bait and switch. Tax the rich, spend all their money on worthless programs. It’s almost as though they said “Ok, we got your budget for you right here, watch this!” And then threw a bunch of horse crap on a plate and expect Americans to just eat it. No questions asked. JUST EAT IT, citizens! Washington is insane. I don’t know if there’s any hope for them to get anything done anymore. I wish Romney were president, at least he knows how much trouble we’re in, these people don’t have a clue.

scalleywag on March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

The Senate Rats are just trying to take their pay now instead of at the end of 2014.

Steve Eggleston on March 14, 2013 at 9:02 AM

$3.2 trillion in new taxes and still no balance.

Steve Eggleston on March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Like I said back in December

A “balanced approach” would have been if Barack Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi had passed a budget in 2010 for FY 2011 and held spending to the same $ amounts as the FY 2004 Bush-Republican Congress budget, there would have been a $10 Billion SURPLUS in FY 2011!

It’s true.

Revenues in FY 2011 were $2.30 Trillion
Outlays in FY 2004 were $2.29 Trillion

Check the numbers yourself…

Budget numbers directly from the White House Office of Management and Budget

If Barack Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi had limited FY 2011 spending to the same $2.29 Trillion that Bush and the Republicans produced in FY 2004, then FY 2011 would have had a surplus of $0.01 Trillion ($10 Billion).

A buget surplus. Even better than a balanced budget.

When Obama and the Democrats use the word “balanced”, it almost always followed by the word “approach”, and what it means to them is RAISING TAXES.

You won’t hear Obama and the Democrats use the word “balanced” followed by the word “budget”. They have no intention of undoing the massive spending increases that have occurred since they took majority control of the House and Senate in January 2007. They have no intention of balancing the budget.

Just more taxes and more spending.

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 9:07 AM

Ok Reince/Boehner/Rand et al:

You now have the document you have been waiting for to totally shred the Democrats for their ridiculous spending, crazy new taxes, and further speeding up the debt death spiral.

Use it now or lose your chance. Pummel them within an inch of their commie existences.

And make sure you tie it around Obama. Expose the ineptocrats.

can_con on March 14, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Why would they do anything else but raise taxes? We have spineless Republicans who voted with Dems to do just that. When our party won’t stand up to them; and they continue to move us left on ALL issues, fiscal, social, foreign policy- Dems are winning and our party is losing..

melle1228 on March 14, 2013 at 9:09 AM

Everyone knows the Democrats are the tax hike party.

Their slogan: tax it, take it and blow it!

Its the party of friends in high places.

Lonetown on March 14, 2013 at 9:16 AM

damn these fools. damn them straight to Gehenna.

tom daschle concerned on March 14, 2013 at 9:19 AM

It is balanced – it increases both spending AND taxes.

tommyboy on March 14, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Obama’s last few budget plans have netted zero votes in the Democratic-controlled Senate. This one won’t do much better, but I’d guess it never gets voted on, since Red and Purple State Senate Dems up in 2014 don’t want this on their resume.

jon1979 on March 14, 2013 at 9:27 AM

How about Dumb-Ø starts going after the Federal employees who owe $3.5 billion in back taxes.

Jayrae on March 14, 2013 at 9:33 AM

It is balanced – it increases both spending AND taxes.

tommyboy on March 14, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Painfully true. A “balanced approach” to Democrats means “Raising taxes AND raising spending”.

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 9:36 AM

Obama’s last few budget plans have netted zero votes in the Democratic-controlled Senate. This one won’t do much better, but I’d guess it never gets voted on, since Red and Purple State Senate Dems up in 2014 don’t want this on their resume.

jon1979 on March 14, 2013 at 9:27 AM

Then I recommend that fiscal conservatives in the Senate use every procedural step they can to block any action in the Senate until the Democrats are forced to vote on this budget. Get them on record.

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 9:37 AM

…these people make me numb!

KOOLAID2 on March 14, 2013 at 9:56 AM

For more fun, try to count how many times Jay Carney said the word “balance” in his press briefing yesterday,

(say below with heavy spaniard accent)

Hey, Jay, I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

My nem is Inigo Montoya, ju keeled my father-r-r, pr-repar-re to die.

beselfish on March 14, 2013 at 9:56 AM

So in Democratic “La La Land”; MORE TAXES + MORE SPENDING = DEFICIT REDUCTION?

GarandFan on March 14, 2013 at 10:25 AM

My wife and I are 80, live on my retirement pension, SS and an annuity. We also pay taxes. Worked in a steel mill 43 years on days, afternoons and night shifts. We watch Barry jet around the country campaigning instead of working, playing golf with Tiger (at a resort so luxurious we didn’t even know those places existed) and planning vacations at some lady’s vineyard (Martha?). We read about tax money being spent on “robotic squirrels”, studies of why lesbians are fat and on and on. You ask me to believe that paying 500,000 for membership in some club called OFA doesn’t get you any favors in return. Now “Dirty Harry” Reid tell me again why I should send you and Barry more of our hard earned money.

Herb on March 14, 2013 at 10:30 AM

So who will be the guests in the background when Obama speaks pushing this bill?

Children?
Grandmas?

Electrongod on March 14, 2013 at 8:33 AM

This will require really heavy artillery. Expect disabled, autistic, wheel chair bound minority kids with drool buckets and feeding tubes wheeled in by grandmas using walkers and canes.

acyl72 on March 14, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Democrat “balanced approach”:

Tax AND Spend

ITguy on March 14, 2013 at 10:55 AM

What about President Balanced Approach?

And I’m sure that entitlements aren’t even touched in Murray’s budget proposal. Everyone on the left lies! Balance means the president getting what he wants, apparently.

Patriot Vet on March 14, 2013 at 11:55 AM

You know the dems could have made the “rich pay their fair share’ back when they controlled both houses of congress. The fact that they didn’t leads me to suspect they prefer to demagogue the issue over actually doing it. Less accountability that way.

agmartin on March 14, 2013 at 11:57 AM

Patty Murray deserves to be the Treasury Secretary.

Rovin on March 14, 2013 at 12:06 PM

Eventually we’ll get to the point where the government can simply tell us “We’re going to commit voter fraud to get into office, take as much money as we want from your paychecks and your savings accounts, waste the money on ourselves and our friends and beneficiaries, and shut down all vital services whenever anybody complains about spending, just because we can — and because we can’t earn an honest living in the private sector, but it’s awesome to be able to push the private sector around anyway” — because there won’t be a damn thing we can do about it except R3V0LUT10N.

Aitch748 on March 14, 2013 at 12:10 PM

I always enjoy watching a 2 year Congress tell the next 5 Congress’s what they can and can’t spend.

Does anyone think the next 5 Congress’s will maintain the status quo of this one? If so, why do we need a Congress for the next 10 years?

BobMbx on March 14, 2013 at 3:50 PM

Balance means the president getting what he wants, apparently.

Patriot Vet on March 14, 2013 at 11:55 AM

Liberal lexicon:

Bi-partisan = the GOP does what we want

Balanced budget = an opportunity to tax more

BobMbx on March 14, 2013 at 3:52 PM