Katie bar the door. Budget “deal” in sight?

posted at 8:01 am on December 9, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

I think we all knew this was coming once the Thanksgiving break was over, but I’ll confess that I didn’t see it coming this quickly. A budget deal is allegedly in the works, and if recent history is anything to go by, budget hawks have more than a little reason to be concerned. Keep in mind that this is an early report with less than clear sources, but Brad Plumer is reporting at the Washington Post’s Wonkblog that Paul Ryan and Patty Murray are doing a dance around the edge of the drain which could result in a compromise.

So… what’ve ya got? (Emphasis mine)

It’s budget time again: Lawmakers from the House and Senate are trying to nail down an agreement to keep the government funded before they leave for the holidays on Dec. 13. And, while nothing’s final just yet, a deal to avert another shutdown may be in reach.

At the moment, Rep. Paul Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray are discussing a proposal to boost discretionary spending modestly in the next two years, by providing government agencies with partial relief from the automatic sequestration budget cuts.

Under current law, discretionary spending is set to fall from $986 billion this year to $967 billion in 2014. The proposed deal would raise that to somewhere around $1 trillion in 2014. The extra money would be split evenly between defense and non-defense programs.

Okay… let’s stop the train right here for a moment, shall we? If the current spending is $986B and the sequestration (which conservatives are fine with but progressives claim is destroying America) is supposed to cut it to $967B (a pittance of a cut, but a cut nonetheless), wouldn’t a compromise result in a number somewhere between those two figures? How did we get to “somewhere around $1 trillion” from there?

Well, I assume that we’re getting something in exchange for that, right? (Emphasis, again, mine)

In exchange, the deal would add other spending cuts further down the road and could raise new revenues by increasing some user fees. The goal is to keep the overall deficit unchanged over the next 10 years.

Did you say, further down the road? I’m sorry to say, I think we’ve seen this cartoon before.

PopeyeWimpyBudget

And we’ll balance it all by adding “some user fees” to the mix. Possible topics include, “Revenue from auctioning off broadband spectrum or higher fees on airport security.” Again – and I hate to be a nitpicker here – didn’t we just give up a really big tax increase not that long ago? Wasn’t the part about “more cuts later on down the road” supposed to be happening about now? Or is the road just longer than we thought?

The article goes on to point out that the expiration of extended unemployment benefits is also “on the table” though not settled on yet. For those of you who have a better direct line to Congressman Ryan’s office than I do, perhaps you could ask precisely what part of this represents a “compromise” in terms of the two parties at the table. Yes, I understand that the Democrats still hold the White House and the upper chamber in terms of who has to approve the deal, but if this is what it looks like should the word “compromise” really be in play?

Again.. this isn’t final by any means. Stay tuned for more details as they emerge.


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Prepare yourselves for when President Math gets elected and all this nonsense stops. Should be right around when we default, give or take a year.

Gatsu on December 9, 2013 at 8:03 AM

Katie bar the door. Budget “deal” in sight?

…”cave in”

KOOLAID2 on December 9, 2013 at 8:03 AM

…”cave in”

KOOLAID2 on December 9, 2013 at 8:03 AM

this…

poor ryan

cmsinaz on December 9, 2013 at 8:04 AM

Wasn’t the part about “more cuts later on down the road” supposed to be happening about now? Or is the road just longer than we thought?

…the “CAN“…just gets bigger!

KOOLAID2 on December 9, 2013 at 8:06 AM

It appears that we are selling out our future some more, with no end of this. With the election on the horizon I guess no one in DC wants to appear tough. What a deal.

oldbearak on December 9, 2013 at 8:09 AM

Katie Bar the Door – that just made me think of my Grandma :)

gophergirl on December 9, 2013 at 8:10 AM

The proposed deal would raise that to somewhere around $1 trillion in 2014. The extra money would be split evenly, between defense and non-defense programs 60-40, between Democrat and Republican lobbyists, interests and war chests.

Meh. Where have you gone, Paul Ryan?

Fallon on December 9, 2013 at 8:14 AM

Ryan is a creature of DC. His theme song is “don’t rock the boat baby”

tim c on December 9, 2013 at 8:15 AM

It sounds like the GOP leadership is prepared to cave immediately this time. Not even bothering with the pretense of wanting some spending cuts or entitlement reform. There needs to be some serious housecleaning in the 2014 primaries and midterms. If they can’t even stand their ground on the freaking sequester, they have no business ever using the words “conservative” or “fiscally responsible” to describe themselves ever again.

Doughboy on December 9, 2013 at 8:15 AM

Paul Ryan is involved. He has never had a problem shoving the burden onto the next generation.

astonerii on December 9, 2013 at 8:16 AM

Katie bar the door. Budget “deal” in sight?
…”cave in”

KOOLAID2 on December 9, 2013 at 8:03 AM

Queue conservative outrage…squealing…gnashing of teeth.

Look, the sequester is a bad DEMOCRAT idea, this deal will mostly do away with it. Despite the increase in spending this is a great thing for republicans. This deal does one thing and one thing well….keeps O-care front and center. THAT is what the republican party needs more than anything. O-care is going to bring all the Dem down in BOTH 2014 and 2016. Than after that we write our own budget and get rid of all of the stupid stuff like federal funding of planned parenthood, the department of agriculture, paying for Nancy Pelosi’s Botox ect.

falcaner on December 9, 2013 at 8:17 AM

Patty Murray is generally regarded as the dumbest senator in Washington.She seems to have the upper hand against Paul Ryan in these negotiations. What does this say about Ryan.

celtic warrior on December 9, 2013 at 8:18 AM

Queue conservative outrage…squealing…gnashing of teeth.

Look, the sequester is a bad DEMOCRAT idea, this deal will mostly do away with it. Despite the increase in spending this is a great thing for republicans. This deal does one thing and one thing well….keeps O-care front and center. THAT is what the republican party needs more than anything. O-care is going to bring all the Dem down in BOTH 2014 and 2016. Than after that we write our own budget and get rid of all of the stupid stuff like federal funding of planned parenthood, the department of agriculture, paying for Nancy Pelosi’s Botox ect.

falcaner on December 9, 2013 at 8:17 AM

I’m not advocating another shutdown. I agree the focus must be on Obamacare in 2014. The problem is I don’t trust the GOP. Let’s say the reclaim the Senate next year. Obama will still be President. A veto-proof majority vote is out of the question, so a shutdown will still be almost mandatory in order to extract any meaningful spending cuts out of this administration going forward. Does anyone for one second believe Boehner and McConnell(assuming he survives 2014) are willing to do whatever is necessary? I sure as hell don’t. So be prepared almost immediately to hear the GOP leadership tell us we have to wait til 2017 before they can do anything about spending or entitlement reform.

Doughboy on December 9, 2013 at 8:25 AM

I am hoping the “deal” isn’t that bad, but bear in mind 0bama would like nothing more than a budget fight to distract from 0bamacare’s failures. Some of the bad parts of the deal are likely about avoiding that budget fight, while letting the fail percolate among the populace.

Sekhmet on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

For the love of… Republicans only concerned with living in D.C. the rest of their lives, being waited on hand and foot by staffers.

Dongemaharu on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

Ryan wants a deal so a budget fight won’t distract from his #1 goal: amnesty.

Jon0815 on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

The Republicans are playing this smart I think. There is no way they will retain the majority or even pick up seats if they do not play the game. If they start with the shutdown stuff again or go for drastic but sane budget cuts, they play right into the Dems and Obamas hands. Give a little before the mid terms as long as any deal goes beyond November.

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

This also plays as “I will glady pay you Tuesday give you border security for a hamburger some amnesty today.” – See what happened in 1986. (And let’s all sing “Won’t Get Fooled Again.”)

apostic on December 9, 2013 at 8:28 AM

The Republicans are playing this smart I think. There is no way they will retain the majority or even pick up seats if they do not play the game. If they start with the shutdown stuff again or go for drastic but sane budget cuts, they play right into the Dems and Obamas hands. Give a little before the mid terms as long as any deal goes beyond November.

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

Yeah, because Democrats have so much extra credibility at the moment.

astonerii on December 9, 2013 at 8:38 AM

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

“compromise” suggest both sides are involved.
the gop always compromises. the left takes.

renalin on December 9, 2013 at 8:39 AM

16. What have we learned today?

A. Nothing.

Answer: __________

17. . .

Axe on December 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

I confess: I didn’t initially expect to be screwed over by Paul Ryan. Nor by John Roberts. Have my sensors gone dangerously out of calibration?

bofh on December 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

The Republicans are playing this smart I think. There is no way they will retain the majority or even pick up seats if they do not play the game. If they start with the shutdown stuff again or go for drastic but sane budget cuts, they play right into the Dems and Obamas hands. Give a little before the mid terms as long as any deal goes beyond November.

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

By the party of “compromise” you mean “give everything the Democrats wants and get nothing?” We keep hearing “just wait until the next election” and it’s always a bunch of lies. We’ve been hearing this for years and years.

The real story here is the Republicans are trying to use Obamacare as a “cloak” for big spending increases that they want, and anyone who criticizes this is immediately labelled as a nut who wants to shut down the government. The same thing will be done to pass amnesty.

Doomberg on December 9, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Doomberg on December 9, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But it isn’t nice to put words into peoples comments that aren’t there.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:46 AM

This isn’t some clever GOP ploy to keep the focus on obamacare…this is who they are. The Republicans voted to raise taxes and the debt ceiling. They couldn’t even defund NPR.

Panther on December 9, 2013 at 8:46 AM

Yet another “grand deal” where the Democrats get everything they want, and the GOP and the American tax payers get screwed. P.T. Barnum was right.

simkeith on December 9, 2013 at 8:49 AM

Yes, I understand that the Democrats still hold the White House and the upper chamber in terms of who has to approve the deal, but if this is what it looks like should the word “compromise” really be in play?

HA is firmly in support of the surrender weasels on this one. Don’t even bother fighting. Whine a bit about the deficit and then cave completely. Vowing while doing so that this is not a hill worth dying for but boy oh boy next time! NEXT TIME those Democrats are going to get a fight.

Did I get the routine correct? I think I did because the dance of the surrender weasels is as predictable as an Obama speech.

Happy Nomad on December 9, 2013 at 8:49 AM

is ryan noodling catfish again?

renalin on December 9, 2013 at 8:52 AM

…The real story here is the Republicans are trying to use Obamacare as a “cloak” for big spending increases that they want, and anyone who criticizes this is immediately labelled as a nut who wants to shut down the government. The same thing will be done to pass amnesty.

Doomberg on December 9, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Pretty much what I was going to say: both sides get what they want, which is more spending.

Fenris on December 9, 2013 at 8:53 AM

Patty Murray is generally regarded as the dumbest senator in Washington.She seems to have the upper hand against Paul Ryan in these negotiations. What does this say about Ryan.

celtic warrior on December 9, 2013 at 8:18 AM

Ryan vs one of the stupidest twits in all of Congress. And we are at a disadvantage.

Hooray for the great GOP.

Jaibones on December 9, 2013 at 8:54 AM

Queue conservative outrage…squealing…gnashing of teeth.

Look, the sequester is a bad DEMOCRAT idea, this deal will mostly do away with it. Despite the increase in spending this is a great thing for republicans. This deal does one thing and one thing well….keeps O-care front and center. THAT is what the republican party needs more than anything. O-care is going to bring all the Dem down in BOTH 2014 and 2016. Than after that we write our own budget and get rid of all of the stupid stuff like federal funding of planned parenthood, the department of agriculture, paying for Nancy Pelosi’s Botox ect.

falcaner on December 9, 2013 at 8:17 AM
I’m not advocating another shutdown. I agree the focus must be on Obamacare in 2014. The problem is I don’t trust the GOP. Let’s say the reclaim the Senate next year. Obama will still be President. A veto-proof majority vote is out of the question, so a shutdown will still be almost mandatory in order to extract any meaningful spending cuts out of this administration going forward. Does anyone for one second believe Boehner and McConnell(assuming he survives 2014) are willing to do whatever is necessary? I sure as hell don’t. So be prepared almost immediately to hear the GOP leadership tell us we have to wait til 2017 before they can do anything about spending or entitlement reform.

Doughboy on December 9, 2013 at 8:25 AM

Yea I understand where you are coming from in terms of not trusting politicians; 99% of them do not have any kind of a spine. What we have to deal with more than anything else is two things #1 get rid of O-care #2 stop the entitlement bomb. We are never going to be able to do with the democrats in charge of ANYTHING. Sooo I figure we steal a page from what the democrats did in 06, take a very decisive issue(Iraq war) and build a veto proof majority over two election cycles(06-08). Then you take your shot, in their case they used it to pass Obama care, we need to use it to do #1&2.

falcaner on December 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

For those of you who have a better direct line to Congressman Ryan’s office than I do, perhaps you could ask precisely what part of this represents a “compromise” in terms of the two parties at the table.

This. For what it’s worth.

The emerging budget deal is a small victory for Republicans

The deal reportedly proposes to authorize about $1.015 trillion in discretionary funding, more than the $967 billion sought by Republicans — the amount specified in the budget-slicing sequestration that kicked in earlier this year — and less than the $1.058 trillion sought by Democrats. Spitting (sic) the difference

Democrats will probably also have to swallow an increase in the amount federal employees have to contribute to their pensions

the main reason Republicans are the net winners in this modest budget deal: Austerity is the default, the sequester is still the law of the land,

kcewa on December 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

I confess: I didn’t initially expect to be screwed over by Paul Ryan. Nor by John Roberts. Have my sensors gone dangerously out of calibration?

bofh on December 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

No. Your sensors are accurate. Don’t reset them.

oldroy on December 9, 2013 at 9:05 AM

Negotiations aren’t over yet. If Republicans continue to push ahead they may be able to get amnesty too, for Obama officials and whoever else will need it.

AnotherJones on December 9, 2013 at 9:07 AM

Compromise always means moving to the left. Progressives are nothing if not patient. Every year the right gives them a little more in compromise to help the ch-hildruuun or the cops and firefighters or the teachers, or the hard-working middle-class folks. But next year, their crisis is worse and the right just needs to compromise a little bit more to help. The progressive march progresses.

tdarrington on December 9, 2013 at 9:13 AM

I confess: I didn’t initially expect to be screwed over by Paul Ryan. Nor by John Roberts. Have my sensors gone dangerously out of calibration?

bofh on December 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

The faster we lose our freedom the more likely we are to notice it is gone.

tdarrington on December 9, 2013 at 9:16 AM

Okay… let’s stop the train right here for a moment, shall we? If the current spending is $986B and the sequestration (which conservatives are fine with but progressives claim is destroying America) is supposed to cut it to $967B (a pittance of a cut, but a cut nonetheless), wouldn’t a compromise result in a number somewhere between those two figures? How did we get to “somewhere around $1 trillion” from there?

In a non-government world, yes. In DC, where the Rats entered asking for a bit over $1 trillion in discretionary spending (I want to say less than $1.2 trillion),….

Steve Eggleston on December 9, 2013 at 9:21 AM

The deal reportedly proposes to authorize about $1.015 trillion in discretionary funding, more than the $967 billion sought by Republicans — the amount specified in the budget-slicing sequestration that kicked in earlier this year — and less than the $1.058 trillion sought by Democrats. Spitting (sic) the difference.

I knew the Rats were asking for less than $1.2 trillion.

As for “splitting the difference”, the Rats are getting $48 billion of the $91 billion in increased spending versus sequester. Rats win again.

Steve Eggleston on December 9, 2013 at 9:24 AM

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

A “maybe” which costs 1T+ bucks is a bit much to be rolling the dice me thinks…

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on December 9, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Excuse me, Congressman Ryan: I’d like to remind you that sequestration is the law of the land.

MikeinPRCA on December 9, 2013 at 9:30 AM

We have to put a big part of the blame for this on the Republicans who are fighting against the defense cuts. They are fighting sequestration right along with the Dems.

Mark1971 on December 9, 2013 at 9:39 AM

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

Yes, once we capture the house and senate in 14, we can spend the next 2 years playing nice and compromising so we can maybe win the WH in 16. Then we can keep playing nice and compromising so we can hold the house and senate in 18…and THEN we’ll really start to get things done. Look out 2019!

tdarrington on December 9, 2013 at 9:41 AM

Become the party of compromise for 11 months and maybe they will pick up more seats and possibly flip the Senate if O Care self implodes more.

Johnnyreb on December 9, 2013 at 8:27 AM

What you are saying makes sense and I hope you’re right. Its just hard to trust the Republican establishment right now with all the in fighting.

magicbeans on December 9, 2013 at 9:46 AM

Maybe used car salesmen instead of lawyers and billionaires should be elected to congress by the Republicans, at least they can negotiate.

These elitists of the old guard Republican party keep making the same mistakes over and over. You’d think after getting snookered two or three times with the same Dem tactics they’d figure it all out.

iamsaved on December 9, 2013 at 9:51 AM

Paul Ryan is our fiscal pinnacle of brilliance on all things budgetary and he’s getting his ass handed to him by a gym teacher. Yeah, tell me the GOP isn’t in on this mess. What was the spending limit in 2006?

DanMan on December 9, 2013 at 9:58 AM

I confess: I didn’t initially expect to be screwed over by Paul Ryan. Nor by John Roberts. Have my sensors gone dangerously out of calibration?

bofh on December 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

Democrats and Republicans are two sides of the same coin and both have inside the beltway fever. I still believe Roberts was gotten to and compromised into his ruling.

ghostwalker1 on December 9, 2013 at 10:02 AM

For those of you who have a better direct line to Congressman Ryan’s office than I do, perhaps you could ask precisely what part of this represents a “compromise” in terms of the two parties at the table.

And when you ask, please, add my name to the list of those you are asking for and use an angry, no furious, icon next to my name.

Anyway, I heard this story on the radio yesterday coming home from errands. The reporter didn’t mention the part about the equivalent cuts being down the road, but I practically hiroshima’d nevertheless, to wit: if there are other places where the budget can be cut to make way for these bump ups in other areas, then that spending to be sacrificed on the altar of gimmicks by politicians isn’t needed in the first place and should be added to the currently established sequester cuts.

I suppose the down the road scam is there to defend against just the sort of eye-poppingly obvious observation I made above. That they are attempting to play that game here just makes me want to blow up again.

Is someone primarying Paul Ryan? I’d love to see him bounced from Congress.

Dusty on December 9, 2013 at 10:12 AM

Keep the spotlight on the Obamacare trainwreck.

ramesees on December 9, 2013 at 10:15 AM

Forgotten in the last few months is the fact that DEMS were primed and ready to shut govt down in order to keep Ocare’s launch on 10/1. What a bunch of ignorant cultists.

But they escape the ire of the LIV. Cruz/Lee and company get branded (by the GOP insiders) as the shut down lunatics.

I’m dizzied by the hypocrisy here. Maybe it is time for a new pledge from politicians. Maybe you only get my vote if you PROMISE TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVT if a we do not have a balanced budget.

kpguru on December 9, 2013 at 10:24 AM

If this year is 986 billion and inflation is 3%, going to 1 trillion would still be about a 19 billion dollar cut in purchasing power. I am willing to call that spending restraint compared to the huge increases in spending seen in the intial BHO years if it gets us to the 2014 midterms without changing the subject from the healthcare fiasco.

KW64 on December 9, 2013 at 10:33 AM

Katie Sebelius, bar the door?

Steve Z on December 9, 2013 at 10:40 AM

[KW64 on December 9, 2013 at 10:33 AM]

Why not do both, keep the sequester as is and keep the focus on Obamacare. It can be done. Just link the two. This kick-the-can down the road budget gimmick is just another, “If you like your plan you can keep it. Period.” scam. Like Obamacare, the deal sounds sweet, but you have to pass the bill before you find out the spending cuts down the road never come.

Dusty on December 9, 2013 at 11:00 AM

Remind me why we bother to vote for Republicans?

DRayRaven on December 9, 2013 at 11:28 AM

Anyone figured out why potential (R) voters stayed home in 2012 yet?

rogerb on December 9, 2013 at 1:03 PM

The best budget deal on the table presently would be having the Federal Reserve stop the printing press.

DDay on December 9, 2013 at 1:07 PM

falcaner on December 9, 2013 at 8:17 AM

How is the Sequestration a bad idea exactly? Because it primarily effects the defense industry? Even if the GOP wins big in 2014, Obamacare will still be the law of the land and Republicans will still be demonized over budget cuts. What is Ryan going to do to try and soften up voters then? Amnesty.

Daemonocracy on December 9, 2013 at 1:16 PM

This kind of crap is why I’m no longer a republican and why they will have to perform to get my vote in the future. When they do this kind of stuff they are no better than democrats. Actually, they are worse because they are lying about being better and the RINO’s seem to fall for it hook, line and sinker.

trigon on December 9, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Keep it simple.

It is not what they say its what the do.

It is the actions of a Two Party Evil Money Cult.

That and they allow known liar, person of treason to serve in the U.S. Senate and pretend to be on our side as Sec. of State.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on December 9, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Paul Ryan, demonstrating once again (still) why the GOP is called “The Stupid Party”.

Another Drew on December 9, 2013 at 1:47 PM

The proposed deal would raise that to somewhere around $1 trillion in 2014. The extra money would be split evenly, between defense and non-defense programs 60-40, between Democrat and Republican lobbyists, interests and war chests.

Meh. Where have you gone, Paul Ryan?

Fallon on December 9, 2013 at 8:14 AM

+1, except that Paul Ryan hasn’t changed, it’s just that people have woken up to the fact that he was never what the GOP establishment proclaimed him to be. He was the GOP establishment’s Trojan Horse in the tea party all along.

FloatingRock on December 9, 2013 at 2:00 PM

A deal as described above has all the makings of Boehner and McConnell LOSING next November year.

What about the debt ceiling? I am fed up with votes for UNDEFINED increases based on TIME. This sad trick to vote for TRILLIONS of dollars in UNSUSTAINABLE increases, without EVER admitting the amounts, is an ABSURD position for anyone OUTSIDE the beltway to accept!

Freddy on December 9, 2013 at 4:19 PM

PS: IF the Republicans vote for a TWO year deal then they will have ABDICATED an entire year of budget negotiations effectively ENDING the reason to even have Republicans in control of the House.

I would suggest that passage of such a bill would mean that it will then be time to start a true third party. Pretending that Republican control of ANYTHING helps will become a fools errend not worth chasing.

Freddy on December 9, 2013 at 4:24 PM