Oh, good: Senate Democrats back to not producing an actual budget this year

posted at 5:21 pm on February 28, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

Meh. They only put pen to paper on a budget once or twice in the last five years anyway, so why start getting fussy about that whole “dereliction of duty” thing now? They’ve got midterms to worry about, people. Via Reuters:

Democrats in the U.S. Senate won’t bother with passing their own budget this year, arguing that a deal in December has already set spending levels for the 2015 fiscal year, and “relitigating” it would create economic uncertainty. …

“While this budget year is settled and it wouldn’t be productive to relitigate it so soon after our two-year deal, I plan to work with my colleagues on the Budget Committee to lay out our long-term vision for creating jobs, boosting the economy, and tackling our deficits fairly and responsibly,” Murray said. …

The decision by Murray not to go through the motions of passing a budget also will allow Senate Democrats to avoid an open amendment process that allows any senator to seek vote on any amendment to the budget – a process that could last days known as a “vote-a-rama.”

With November congressional elections looming, Democrats are concerned that this could devolve into a series of partisan votes that could be used in campaign advertising.

True that the budget deal that passed both chambers in December established a discretionary spending level of $1.014 trillion for 2015, but at the very least, a budget is a good way to definitively lay out where everybody stands on a whole host of specific and dicey issues. Murray’s ranking-member counterpart was not pleased by the news, via the Weekly Standard:

Senator Jeff Sessions from Alabama released this statement. “Senate Democrats are required by law to produce a budget,” wrote Sessions.

“Our nation is in enormous financial distress, and workers and families are suffering.  Senate Democrats have produced only one budget in the last five years.  This Senate and, more importantly, the American public, deserve to see a detailed ten-year financial plan to contain our dangerously rising debt and revitalize our dismal economy.”

A handful of Republicans were actually pushing for Murray’s House-GOP counterpart Paul Ryan not to do a budget this year either, the better to avoid handing Democrats any more cudgels with which to distract from that most inconvenient of political liabilities, ObamaCare. Speaker Boehner announced on Thursday, however, that the House does intend to vote on a full and balanced budget resolution:

“CBO says our budget outlook is unsustainable. We’ve made some progress on the discretionary side, but on the main drivers of our debt-entitlements-we’ve got a lot more work to do,” Ryan said through his spokesman Thursday.  “House Republicans will keep offering real solutions to get spending under control, fix our broken tax code, create jobs, and put us on the path to balance.”


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What’s a “budget”?

You inventing new words, Erika ?

listens2glenn on February 28, 2014 at 5:26 PM

Crap weasels of the GOPe rejoice!

PolAgnostic on February 28, 2014 at 5:26 PM

You’d almost think that was part of their job description. Nah.
They did one last year so we should cut them some slack.

notwantedinN.Y.

jmtham156 on February 28, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Democrats in the U.S. Senate won’t bother with passing their own budget this year, arguing that a deal in December has already set spending levels for the 2015 fiscal year, and “relitigating” it would create economic uncertainty. …

.
We already have “economic uncertainty”, because the ‘December deal’ is based on going further into debt.

listens2glenn on February 28, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Senator Jeff Sessions from Alabama released this statement. “Senate Democrats are required by law to produce a budget,” wrote Sessions.

Yah, and Dog Eater isn’t allowed by law to arbitrarily offer waivers, delay implementation of, or provide funding for DeathCare and the GOP is doing exactly what about all of this?

Nothing. So get all huffy and stamp your foot, I’m staying home on election day.

Bishop on February 28, 2014 at 5:34 PM

It’s kind of hard to fault them for not doing something they’re unqualified to do.

Just saying.

Harry, you’re now free to go about your lying.

trigon on February 28, 2014 at 5:35 PM

What I find discerning is that we’re getting used to this.

HiJack on February 28, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Come on, Harry Reid has to spend his time calling American citizens liars. Harry Reid also is busy not answering rumors of his alleged pedophilia.

rbj on February 28, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Budget, schmudget. We are living in the times of rainbows and Unicorns under the first black president.

jukin3 on February 28, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Sessions has a lot of nerve bringing up the law.

jmtham156 on February 28, 2014 at 5:42 PM

***** **** ********

Murphy9 on February 28, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Smart Power!
If you have no budget, you don’t have those annoying “budget constraints”!

Mimzey on February 28, 2014 at 5:42 PM

They may produce a budget, but it will be a “Horror story’ and be “untrue.” Just ask Harry.

NoPain on February 28, 2014 at 5:44 PM

It would be all lies anyway.

de rigueur on February 28, 2014 at 5:57 PM

So it’s business as usual for the democrats. Anyone actually surprised about this?

onesheep on February 28, 2014 at 6:04 PM

Well now that the sequester is in place spending should be restrained.

Franklin100 on February 28, 2014 at 6:40 PM

The scary thing is that much of the tax paying public does, in fact, create budgets of their own, often times related directly to the illegal,ever changing, unrealistic, mind-blowing crapola coming out of DC and, by extension, the various states. Businesses are constantly having to roll the dice or throw darts at an ever changing board of mandates and negative dollar signs. Insurance rates, doctor availability and available plans seem to be chosen by lottery out of a bucket of caca. O’ jogs around with ‘Biden his time’, extolling the virtues of jogging at yer terminal while seeking a healthcare plan, while Rome burns, aided and abetted Harry ‘Nero’ Liareid. Don’t git me stahtid!

vnvet on February 28, 2014 at 7:07 PM

Sessions has a lot of nerve bringing up the law.

jmtham156 on February 28, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Indeed! The law used to hate black people!!

Axeman on February 28, 2014 at 7:07 PM

A budget is only for those who have realistic constraints on their spending. Since progressives see NO boundaries to their spending plans, a budget would merely get in the way.

Money is no object. We’ll just print/tax/borrow more!

xNavigator on February 28, 2014 at 7:11 PM

The only conclusion a sane individual can come to:

Democrats are not interested in the welfare of this nation, unless it’s to get this nation on welfare.

Democrats would prefer, and actively work toward, the complete downfall of America thinking it will somehow bolster their religion of big government and slavery of the people. (See? they didn’t let us be in total control, even though we tried, and look what happened!)

Liberals, democrats, progressives (d or r), should be banned and/or ejected from our nation. If they resist, well, maybe we can treat them to what they’ve been trying to shove down our throats….use your imagination.

Diluculo on February 28, 2014 at 7:21 PM

We’ve made some progress on the discretionary side, but on the main drivers of our debt-entitlements-we’ve got a lot more work to do,” Ryan said through his spokesman Thursday.

You haven’t made any progress on the discretionary side, none. And you haven’t done any work on the entitlement side, none.

lowandslow on February 28, 2014 at 8:10 PM

It must be those damn Koch brothers….Everything is their fault!!

Indianatime on February 28, 2014 at 10:04 PM

All I can say is, when the Republicans take over this fall, they’d better start by passing budgets and doing the right thing. I’m so sick of the dysfunctional Democrats I can’t stand it any more.

bflat879 on February 28, 2014 at 11:14 PM

WTF?

KOOLAID2 on February 28, 2014 at 11:30 PM

Senator Jeff Sessions from Alabama released this statement. “Senate Democrats are required by law to produce a budget,” wrote Sessions.

This is bizarre, if the democrats have their budget figures from to Murray Ryan negotiations, why don’t they want to comply with the law and put it in writing?

Fleuries on March 1, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Am I the ONLY person that remembers Paul Ryan stating on TV and radio that this budget deal would force the democrats to return to normal budget order?

How many times do the Washington elites think they can lie directly to the people?

Look for Ryan to quietly leave the budget comittee for ‘greener pastures’ to spread his manure.

Freddy on March 1, 2014 at 6:39 PM