More Budget Problems for Congress and the President


Caryn Freeman 5:46PM EST
The Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the President's 2012 budget. The proposed budget is expected to decrease the deficit in the next few years. However, the CBO predicted the national debt under Obama's proposals would double by 2021. While the budget battle ensues on the Hill lawmakers continue to Band-Aid the issue while ignoring the encroaching debt ceiling. The inability of lawmakers to do their most critical job, keeping the country operational so markets and citizens can function cements voter disapproval with Washington. In a recent ABC poll just 26 percent of Americans say they are optimistic about “our system of government and how well it works,” With the inability of Congress and the President to come up with workable economic solutions. What both parties face, approaching the 2012 election, is putting off voters entirely. To the point that more voters may find participating in the political process useless. As we continue to see voter participation decline, with the exception of 2008 and Organizing for America’s push to bring young people into the process and bring voters who had abandoned the process back to the polls. What we also saw from OFA in the 2010 mid-term was the OFA’s outing as a one-trick pony. This was clearly demonstrated when two-million “Obama voters” stayed home. As a result we all witnessed the historical “shellacking” of Democrats in Congress.

Although recent polling shows that trust in the GOP by independent voter has declined in the last few months. Democrats have done nothing to gain the confidence of Independents. The do-nothing theater of Congress has recently drawn fire from Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner who made an effort to reminded lawmakers this week that carrying on as though either side has answers to how to balance the budget or deal with the debt ceiling, "had no value in bringing discipline to fiscal choices of the country in the past," Geithner said at a House Appropriations committee hearing. Whatever this routine of playing high minded, capable leader is to be gained by either side, I'm not sure. As of Friday leadership of either party had produced any workable solutions as to how to deal with growing budget crises or the debt ceiling. Congress has next week off so no resolution will be made anytime soon. House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) told POLITICO Thursday that some riders will be necessary to move a seven-month budget plan through the chamber. “As we’ve seen, many of these riders are a critical part of getting it through,” Rogers said. At this point social issues like weather or not to cut programs like Planned Parenthood are secondary to actually get something done before campaign season heats up this summer.

As is typical of Democrats their lack of footing and tendency to be pulled any direction the liberal non-profit factions of the Democratic party may take them. This internal chaos could tug them from the White House and the Senate. The emotions around the current budget crisis, slow economic recovery, immigration, gay rights and government funded abortions seem to be working against the Democrats. Republicans are more skilled at holding their footing and rarely allow themselves to be pulled by anything in any direction other than the right. What this means is that both parties will soon have to step up and take action. The do-nothing theater of Washington is in its last act. By late summer these issues will be debated in forums as we approach the run for the White House. The country will be watching and no one goes to the theater to see the same show twice.