The office of Senator Jeff Sessions, Alabama Republican and Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued a statement on Monday night warning that President Obama’s fiscal cliff plan would push the federal debt another $9 trillion over ten years. This would take the federal debt to over $20 trillion by the end of the president’s second term and to over $25 trillion over ten years. According to Sessions, by 2016, the yearly federal spending would overshadow $4 trillion. This would include a 30 percent increase in welfare costs.
According to the statement released from Sessions’s office:
“There is a reason why the White House strongly prefers to operate in secrecy… If the White House believes our analysts are mistaken, the Budget Committee is standing by to review any concrete financial plan the President wishes to produce.”
I spoke with Senator Sessions on Monday and like Grover Norquist, who believes C-SPAN cameras should be covering the fiscal talks, Sessions agreed saying it would be a “good idea” to do so.
The Alabama Republican believes there is a reason why the White House “operates in secrecy.”
“I am confident that if they made this secret proposal public, and in a form that could be scored by CBO, these facts would become clear and the ‘plan’ would be resoundingly rejected by the American people and their representatives in Congress,” he wrote. Sessions included the following figures:
More than $170 billion in stimulus spending, including $26 billion for extended unemployment benefits, $50 billion for transportation spending, and $90 billion for an extension of the payroll holiday (which is considered on-budget spending)
· The elimination of the $1.2 trillion sequester (half of the spending cuts exchanged in 2011 for the $2.1 trillion in previous debt limit increase) without corresponding spending cuts, resulting in a $1.2 trillion spending increase
· The unpaid-for ‘doc fix’ for Medicare reimbursements ($394 billion)
· Only $600 billion in mandatory ‘savings’ primarily achieved through further reductions in provider payments beyond those in the President’s health law, which do nothing to enhance the long-term sustainability of entitlement spending
· Over $800 billion in phony ‘war savings’—one of the most widely discredited budget gimmicks in existence
Secretary Geithner’s claim of two dollars in spending cuts for every one dollar in tax hikes is therefore an egregious falsehood. The President is calling for $1.6 trillion in tax hikes. But instead of a corresponding $3.2 trillion spending cut, there is a more than $1 trillion spending increase.
“We believe that these figures accurately state what the President has in mind. But, if the White House believes our analysts are mistaken, the Budget Committee is standing by to review any concrete financial plan the President wishes to produce,” the statement concluded.