Sunday, November 22, 2009

Centrists on Fiscal Responsibility

At this point in the health care reform legislative process, we've seen all kinds of games being played with deficit numbers, especially with the more-expensive Senate bill, all of which --most notoriously having the CBO score benefits starting in 2014 (not the House's 2013)-- revolve around getting reporters to stick with the now-familiar storyline: centrist Dems are "fiscally responsible".

How "fiscally responsible" are the centrists ( link to the DLC's "New Democrat of the Week" )?

DLC | New Dem Of The Week | April 16, 2001
New Dem of the Week: Mary Landrieu
U.S. Senator, Louisiana

Committed to fiscal responsibility and debt reduction, Sen. Landrieu has also joined those in the Senate leading the way in bipartisanship negotiations over the President's tax cut and budget resolution. She worked with fellow Louisianian Sen. John Breaux and a bipartisan group of Senate moderates in crafting a compromise between the President's $1.6 trillion tax cut proposal and the Democratic alternative.

"Today I joined with Sen. Breaux in voting for a $1.2 trillion tax cut," said Landrieu in a press release -- "the product of a bipartisan team of senators working together to produce a tax cut that all Louisianians and Americans can be proud of, while leaving room for investments in defense, education and debt reduction."

The story of centrist spending discipline is truthy, not true.

We can't let centrist Dems get away with labeling us the fiscal profligates, and themselves the sober, Serious kitchen-table planners.

There's a lot we can say about Republicans looting the treasury when they're in charge, but there's a lot more we should be saying about New Democrats' record of budget-busting, the first of which would be:

"How dare they..."

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