WASHINGTON – While Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., today unveiled a GOP budget proposal that would cut $4 trillion in spending over the next 10 years, it still requires Congress to raise the debt limit and continue borrowing beyond the $14.3 trillion in the federal government has already accumulated.
That doesn’t sit well with the organizer of the “No More Red Ink” campaign that has been lobbying House Republicans to just say no to more borrowing.
“Republicans are really going about this process all wrong,” says Joseph Farah, editor and chief executive officer of WND, whose campaign has already delivered nearly 1 million letters to 241 House Republicans urging them to oppose raising the debt limit. “What they should be doing is drafting a budget that is based on actual projected revenues. That’s the way businesses are forced to operate. That’s the way families are forced to operate. That’s the way the individual taxpayers who fund the government’s operations are forced to operate.”
Farah points out such a budget would require about $1 trillion in cuts starting this year, not $4 trillion over 10 years.
Democrats have been digging in their heels even against a proposal to cut $33 billion from the budget right now. It is beyond unlikely that they will accept Ryan’s plan for $4 trillion in cuts over a decade.
Farah points out the Republican plan calls for the elimination of no departments or agencies of the federal government – even those that have questionable constitutional justification.
“This is way too little, way too late,” he says. “And since the plan requires approval of the Democratic Senate and the signature of Barack Obama, there is no way it will ever become law. The Republicans in the House, however, simply can say no to raising the debt limit if they want to force cuts much bigger than their new plan. By saying no to a raise in the debt limit, they would force those cuts. Anything less than that is capitulation to the Democrats in the Senate and to Obama.”
Farah’s “No More Red Ink” campaign is a high-tech, grass-roots lobbying effort targeting only House Republicans, who, he points out, hold all the cards with regard to derailing any effort to raise the debt limit. After deluging House Republicans with nearly 1 million letters urging them to say no to more borrowing, a majority of the Republican members have gone on the record opposing a hike in the debt limit beyond $14.3 trillion – a figure about to be reached in the next 30 days.
“All it takes is 218 votes in the House to force the government to start living within its means right now,” says Farah. “We don’t need another phony 10-year plan. We need a one-year plan. If it means eliminating Obamacare, so be it. If it means eliminating the Department of Education, so be it. If it means eliminating the Environmental Protection Agency and Planned Parenthood funding and PBS and NPR subsidies, so be it. This is an opportunity for Republicans to walk the walk and not just talk the talk. One vote accomplishes everything they have been telling us they favor.”
Since the “No More Red Ink” campaign began, dozens of House Republicans have defected from House Speaker John Boehner’s position, leaving at last count by WND, only 20 Republicans supporting an increase in the debt limit.
The latest tally shows 142 House Republicans opposing a raise in the $14.3 trillion debt limit with only 20 favoring it. Another 39 are undecided, while 40 say they would only vote to raise the debt limit with conditions, such as agreement on major cuts, entitlement reform of a balance budget agreement.
The survey included contact by email or phone with all GOP House staffers, or a reliance on recent public statements by members. It was conducted last week.
A WND survey taken in early March showed 122 House Republicans opposed to raising the debt limit under any circumstances with 23 favoring it.
“This is a remarkable change and shows Americans still have a chance at stopping the borrowing-and-spending madness in Washington in the near term,” said Farah. “We are effectively moving House Republicans against raising the debt limit – and they are beginning to realize this is where their real power is.”
Since approval of both houses of Congress is required to raise the debt limit, this is one of the very few meaningful actions the Republican-controlled House can take without the consent of the Senate or the White House, Farah says.
He has called it the Republicans’ “secret weapon.”
Members of the media who would like to interview Joseph Farah about this story can email firstname.lastname@example.org.