Pelosi: It's really a false argument to say we have a spending problem



Well, I think that sequestration is a bad idea all around. … The fact is, we’ve had plenty of spending cuts. … What we need is growth. We need growth with jobs. … So, again, we have to make a judgment about how do we get growth with jobs, that’s where the real revenue comes from. You don’t get it by… cutting into education, cutting back on investments in science and National Institute of Health, food safety, you name it. … So, it isn’t as much of a spending problem as it is a priorities, and that’s what a budget is, setting priorities. … Nothing brings more money to the Treasury of the United States than investments in education of the American people. … So if you recognize that, which cuts really help us and which cuts hurt our future. And cuts in education, scientific research and the rest are harmful. And they are what are affected by the sequestration. So, it is almost a false argument to say that we have a spending problem. We have a budget deficit problem.

Just let that sink in for a moment. We’ve had “plenty of spending cuts,” and we don’t have a spending problem — “we have a budget deficit problem.” …Yeah, all of those ‘plentiful’ spending cuts are probably the reason we’re on track to add $7 trillion more to our debt in just ten years.

The nonsensical contortions she just made to protect the White House’s sudden panic about the sequester are really quite impressive. On the one hand, I’m almost pleased that she acknowledges that the most efficient and productive way to increase revenue is to increase economic growth — but that is completely canceled out by her belief that government spending is what really drives growth. “Investments” in education are the single biggest thing bringing in the most money to the Treasury? No. Blaming the Bush administration for spending increases? Yawn. One of Obama’s own major economic advisors pointed out that tax hikes hurt growth, but these recent tax hikes are awesome and their effectiveness is about “timing”? What the what?

This all comes down to the Democrats’ refusal to substantively acknowledge and address the urgent need for major entitlement reform, the absolute main driver of our debt, and instead keep slapping on more short-terms band-aids made of government “investments” and “revenue,” a.k.a. tax, increases. The GOP is not impressed with that strategy:

Eric Cantor said today that pushing off the sequester by additional tax hikes was unacceptable.

“We can’t be raising taxes every three months in this town,” Cantor said on Meet the Press today. “The bottom line is we want tax reform, but we want to go plug those loopholes that the president talks about to bring down tax rates because we believe that’s pro-growth and we can get an economy growing again. Let people who earn the money keep more of it. The president is not talking about that. What he’s talking about is trying to raise more taxes for Washington to spend the money.”