How the Democrats got us to
By Soren Dayton
October 2nd, 2013
The press has been falling
over itself to attack Republicans for the shutdown and claiming that
they are the source of all the irresponsibility in the process. They
have conveniently forgotten several important things about how much
the Democrats have broken the budget process in the last couple of
years and in this year in particular. I wrote back in January about
how the Senate Democrats were dismantling the budget process. While
the Senate did pass a budget resolution this year, in many ways the
situation has gotten much, much worse. A shutdown is, purely for
procedural reasons, a natural and logical consequence of the massive
failure of the Senate to do its job.
Let’s work through the
The budget process starts
every year with the President offering his budget in the first week
of February. But that’s not what happened. He offered it on April
10, two months after the statutory deadline. In fact, he offered it
after both the House and the Senate had passed budget resolutions, so
his budget plan was already a moot point. He didn’t do his job, so
Congress had to move on without him. (Incidentally, this was the
first time that the Senate had passed one since April 29, 2009)
But then the Senate ground
to a halt. The Library of Congress offers a very helpful scorecard
about how the budget process is proceeding this year that makes it
very easy to compare how each chamber did, and how that compares to
This year, the House passed
four appropriations bills:
Military Construction and
Veterans Affairs on June 4, which passed 421-4. This bill cost $158
Homeland Security on June
6, which passed 245-182. This bill cost $39 billion.
Energy and Water on Jule
10, which passed 227-198. This bill cost $30 billion.
Defense on July 24, which
passed 315-109. This bill cost $516 billion.
The least controversial of
these, Defense and Military Construction and Veterans Affairs,
totaling $674 billion is over half of the $1.15 trillion that
President Obama requested. The Senate could have done something with
these and moved the ball forward. The House vote totals prove that
these weren’t controversial.
By contrast, the Senate
only put a single appropriations bill on the floor, Transportation
and Housing and Urban Development, nicknamed, appropriately, THUD.
This bill cost $54 billion, less than 5% of the President’s
proposal. And they brought it to the floor at the end of July, at the
last possible minute before the August recess.
For the rest of this
article and more, go to Redstate