"Reality," Stephen Colbert famously told President Bush to his face, "has a well-known liberal bias." That inconvenient truth is at the heart of the expanding Republican war on the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Increasingly frustrated by CBO analyses showing that the 2009 economic stimulus worked as designed, that the Paul Ryan GOP Medicare rationing plan would massively shift costs to seniors, that income inequality is at record levels and, most damning of all, the Affordable Care Act reduces the national debt, Republican leaders have slandered the agency's work as "smoke and mirrors" and "budget gimmicks, deceptive accounting, and implausible assumptions used to create the false impression of fiscal discipline."
This is a basic tool Republicans have been using for awhile now...when you don't like the facts, simply create distrust about their source. The truth that Republicans want to avoid in all this is that, for all their talk to the contrary, they don't really care about the deficit. The only thing they care about is a redistribution of money from the poor to the rich.
This truth was made totally obvious to anyone who took a look at the basic math of what happened with the Super Committee. A couple of days ago, it was reported that during deliberations Democrats and Republicans each released wish lists for what they wanted the committee to produce. I took a few minutes to track down the math.
- $1,000 billion in new tax revenue
+ $447 billion for the American Jobs Act
Total: $553 billion in deficit reduction
+ $4,000 billion to extend the Bush tax cuts
+ $250 billion to repeal ACA
- $700 billion to block grant Medicaid
- $400 billion for reductions in mandatory spending
- $150 billion by cutting the federal work force
Total: $2,500 billion added to the deficit
So the Republicans - who took the world's economy to the brink of collapse supposedly over the issue of deficit reduction - actually presented a wish list that added $2.5 trillion to the deficit. I didn't even include in that tally the fact that they also wanted to include Ryan's budget plan, which has been scored to increase the deficit by $6 trillion over the next ten years. That's because some of its provisions might overlap with the rest of their wish list and I'm trying to be as fair as possible. So the end result would likely have added more to the deficit.
This is why Republicans don't want the American people to understand the math...it exposes their lies. Too bad some of us are still capable of adding and subtracting.