John Boehner hasn’t been calling his debt ceiling bill by the right name. He should have been calling it the GOP Poverty for More Americans Act. According to the non-partisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “Boehner’s new budget proposal would essentially require…a choice between deep cuts in the years immediately ahead in Social Security and Medicare benefits for current retirees, repeal of health reform’s coverage expansions, or wholesale evisceration of basic assistance programs for vulnerable Americans.”
The GOP Poverty Enlargement Plan has absolutely no revenue increases in it. Instead, it relies on cutting programs, including entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare. Boehner told Rush Limbaugh that Republicans appointed to a special committee will find the $1.8 trillion in savings and won’t support tax increases. He told his own caucus that $1.8 trillion comes from “entitlement programs.”
According to Robert Greenstein of the CBPP, to get that much in entitlement savings over the next ten years would require one of three things: 1) cut Social Security and Medicare benefits heavily for current retirees; 2) repeal the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansions while keeping its measures cutting Medicare payments; or 3) essentially destroy the safety net for low-income children, parents, senior citizens, and people with disabilities. Greenstein, an expert on the federal budget, says there is no other plausible way to get $1.5-1.8 trillion in entitlement cuts over the decade.
The misnamed “Cut, Cap, and Balance” joke that was passed by the House recently showed for all to see that tea-poisoned Republicans think the only way to do what they want is to make sure that 35-50 million Americans stay uninsured for health care, throw as many people as possible off Medicaid, cut Social Security pensions, and in essence declare war on the “least among us.” This is class warfare with disregard for the poor that would make Marie Antoinette blush.
All of this is the Teapublican plan to protect the wealthiest among us and their welfare system, a system paid for by the rest of us who don’t live on capital gains, have private jets, or make millions by gaming the tax code.