"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Senate Will Finally Get Chance To Vote On Budgets; Will Democrats Vote Down Obama’s Yet Again?

May 15th, 2012 by mopns · No Comments

It’s now been over 3 years since the Democrat-controlled Senate passed a budget. Not only has Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said, “There’s no need to have a Democratic budget in my opinion. . . . It would be foolish for us to do a budget at this stage,” Democrats have prevented their own Budget Committee Chairman, Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND), from even taking one up in committee.

In stark contrast, Senate Republicans will offer several different budget plans this week for senators to vote on. The Hill writes, “Republican senators are expected to force a vote this week on President Obama’s fiscal 2013 budget plan, while Democrats are relishing a roll call on Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) budget blueprint.” In addition, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), and Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) will all offer budgets for the Senate to consider.

But, as The Hill notes, it’s worth pointing out that Democrats don’t want to support their own president’s budget. “The GOP initiative is intended to embarrass the White House by painting the president’s budget as so weak on fiscal issues that his own party cannot support it, and to highlight the inability of the Senate Democratic majority to produce a budget. It has been more than 1,100 days since the Senate cleared a budget resolution. GOP aides say that if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) tried to rally support for Obama’s budget, he could get a dozen yes votes at best. That estimate may be low, though there is a clear contrast in how congressional Democrats dealt with Obama’s budget in 2009 and this year. Three years ago, the Democratic-led Senate passed Obama’s budget 55-43. Obama’s approval ratings were much higher at the time, which fostered strong Democratic unity on Capitol Hill. Some centrist Democrats, including Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), have said they prefer a budget with deeper deficit cuts than Obama presented. Vulnerable Democratic senators are seen as unwilling to vote for the tax increases detailed in the White House budget. Aides to several Democratic centrists were noncommittal Monday on how their bosses would vote if the Obama budget comes up.”

Last year, of course, Obama’s budget received zero votes in the Senate, and his budget this year received zero votes in the House. Will any Democrat senator vote for it this year? Based on The Hill report, it sounds like Democrats may be getting their excuses ready: “This year, Obama is sticking by his budget, so Democrats are embracing another reason to vote it down. The White House moved Monday to free Democrats to vote no by saying the legislation embodying Obama’s budget is ‘different’ because it doesn’t contain identical policy language.”

This week, no thanks to Democrats, the Senate will finally have the opportunity to vote on at least five different budgets. Will Democrats support any of them, or continue their record of astonishing fiscal irresponsibility?

Related:

Rasmussen Reports: Generic Congressional Ballot: Republicans 45%, Democrats 38%

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