How do you cut taxes by $5 trillion with the majority going to the rich and increase military spending without making huge cuts to programs like Medicare and other entitlements? In short – you can’t.
Ezra Klein literally calls Mitt “Romney’s budget plan is a fantasy” HERE; an excerpt:
Consider what the Romney campaign, then, is saying: If Romney is elected, then by his third year in office, every single federal program that is not Medicare, Social Security, or defense, will be cut, on average, by 40 percent. That means Medicaid, infrastructure, education, food safety, road safety, the postal service, basic research, foreign aid, housing subsidies, food stamps, the Census, Pell grants, the Patent and Trademark Office, the FDA — all of it has to be cut by, on average, 40 percent. If Romney tried to protect any particular priority, it would mean all the others have to be cut by more than 40 percent.
That’s not even remotely plausible. The consequences would be catastrophic. The outcry would be deafening. And Romney has shown no stomach for selling such severe cuts.
The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities did an analysis on Mitt Romney’s budget plan with all of it’s vagueness therein and found that significant cuts to Medicare and just about everything else would need to take place HERE:
Governor Romney’s cuts would be substantially deeper than those required under the austere House-passed budget plan authored by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI). Over the 2014-2022 period, Romney would require cuts in programs other than Social Security and defense of $7 trillion to $10 trillion, compared with a little over $5 trillion under the Ryan budget. By 2022, Romney’s cuts would shrink non-defense discretionary spending — which, over the past 50 years, has averaged 3.9 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and has not fallen below 3.2 percent — to between 1.1 percent and 1.6 percent of GDP.
And we know that Romney would make huge cuts to women’s services; more on that HERE.
And as we compared Obama and Romney’s tax plans HERE – Romney promises everyone they get a free pony … and the rich get like 200 free ponies under his plan. He did after all promise to cut EVERY AMERICAN’s taxes by 20% (source):
Romney’s plan cuts taxes to about 17 percent of GDP. Most of those cuts would accrue to upper-income Americans. According to the Tax Policy Center, under Romney’s plan, taxpayers in the bottom 20 percent would pay a rate of 3.4 percent, those in the middle 20 percent would pay a rate of 15.6 percent, and the top 1 percent would pay 25.9 percent.
But as President Obama asked – how do you reduce taxes by $5 trillion and still reduce the deficit? You can see more on the President’s speech and the questions therein HERE.
And Simon Johnson – Professor at MIT and former chief economist at the IMF – explains HERE … tax cuts don’t pay for themselves so you either have to cut spending somewhere else to pay for these tax cuts or you blow up the deficit even more.
The bottom line is that betting that tax cuts will pay for themselves is a high-risk strategy and not a good idea at our current levels of government debt relative to gross domestic product. We do not have a large margin for error.
But Romney has proposed HUGE increases in military spending; the National Interest explains HERE:
Now consider how this compares with the recent past. As you can see, Romney’s 4 percent gimmick would result in taxpayers spending more than twice as much on the Pentagon as in 2000 (111 percent higher, to be precise) and 45 percent more than in 1985, the height of the Reagan buildup. Over the next ten years, Romney’s annual spending (in constant dollars) for the Pentagon would average 64 percent higher than annual post–Cold War budgets (1990-2012), and 42 percent more than the average during the Reagan era (1981-1989).
And we already know how Romney feels about “poor people” …. he isn’t worried about them:
When someone challenges Romney on his numbers – he says that he wouldn’t necessarily make cuts here or there but he won’t say WHERE he will make his cuts … but the math shows they would have to be SIGNIFICANT. We covered more on his vagueness and lack of specifics HERE.
And we already know that Mitt Romney has said plain as day that he would sign the Paul Ryan budget plan into law if President. This is a budget that would lower Romney’s own taxes to less than 1% (source).
And while conservatives scheme and plot to turn Medicare into a voucher plan … they have already put out their talking points telling surrogates not to use words like ‘entitlement reform,’ ‘privatization,’ or ‘every option is on the table. But when they talk about the plan to turn Medicare into a voucher program they should say they are trying to ‘strengthen,’ ‘secure,’ ‘save,’ ‘preserve, ‘protect.’ it. (source) And Mitt Romney says that A LOT. He and Paul Ryan constantly say – we’re just trying to protect it for future generations; no – you’re not.
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