The Senate is about to pass a bill that the CBO estimates will cut the deficit by $197 billion over the 10-year 2014–2023 period, but there are those from a certain party who won’t vote for the bill unless additional spending of $30 billion is added to the bill. That party is the Republican Party.
Based on the way the Republican Party likes to brand itself as the party of fiscal conservatism and the way they like to brand their opponents as “tax and spend” liberals, it is a little odd that it is members of the Republican Party who are the ones who are insisting on adding $30 billion of government spending.
It is a little odd but not a lot odd. This is the pattern of the Republican Party: they like to talk big about being conservative spenders and deficit hawks, but history shows that they are quite fond of adding to government spending so long as it is for stuff they want the government to spend its money on.
They like government to spend money on “security.” Heck they created a whole new branch of government: Homeland Security. Recent estimates are that this new department has cost us $791 billion since it began ten years ago. Even adjusting for inflation that is more money than we spent on the New Deal.
Republicans also like to spend money that end up in the coffers of corporations rather than in the pockets of individuals. When individuals benefit, their stock portfolios don’t perform nearly as well as when they use tax dollars to churn up business for publicly owned companies.
The stock market has swooned over the past few days at the thought that the Federal Reserve might soon end its stimulus package for banks and corporations. The American people only got an anemic stimulus package 5 years ago, and Republicans are blocking any consideration of doing more. One of the reasons, among many, is, I believe, that the Federal Reserve ties its stimulus for banks and corporations to the unemployment rate. The party for Wall Street ends when people go back to work, so why would Republicans want people to go back to work?