House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D.-Md.) said on the House floor last night that if the balanced budget amendment Republicans are supporting is ratified and included in the Constitution it would make it “virtually impossible” to raise taxes.O.K. Steney, you've sold me. The "virtual" bit is the kicker. If something is possible, under any circumstances, no matter how far-fetched, the congress will find a way to do it. Guaranteed. Still, this must look especially tough as Harry Reid (D-SEIU) arranged to get the thing killed in the Senate along a strict party-line vote.
Again, the rationale behind killing it in the Senate is getting past me, as several Democrats have come out in favor of balanced budget rules in the past. One must suppose it was a face-saving move by Reid to avoid having the president use his veto on something that 2/3 of the American population supports.
The measure as sent to the Senate, actually gives the President another 2.3 Trillion on the national credit card and demands only modest budget cuts, most of which are in the "to be named later" category, which is legalese for "never".
If John Bhoener has a proper sense of humor, or if I was advising him, the measure would be renamed "Son of Cut, Cap, and Balance" with the credit extension cut 20%, and sent to the Senate on the understanding that the upcoming "Bride of Cut, Cap, and Balance" would have another 20% taken off. Get it while the getting's good.
Keep in mind that if the borrowing authority is not passed, the U.S. will not be foreclosed on by the Chinese. It simply means that we will have to get along on the not inconsiderable income we've got, pay the bills first, then figure out who gets laid off because there's no money to pay them, just like everybody else.