House GOP Unveils Budget With Trillions in Cuts to Medicaid, Food Benefits, and More

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Yves here. One of the problems with budget fights is that they show the degree to which regular voters are disenfranchised. As we have recounted, despite media claims that bona fide progressive progressive positions are leftist and therefore not widely supported, polls have consistently shows that policies like strengthening Social Security and Medicare, cutting our military adventurism, taxing the rich, and improving social safety nets get majority or at worst plurality backing. But as we know, in the US, it’s money and not votes that drive politics.

This budget plan is consistent with Lambert’s rules of neoliberalism:

1. Because markets

2. Go die!

By Jake Johnson, staff writer at Common Dreams. Originally published at Common Dreams

House Republicans unveiled a budget blueprint on Tuesday that proposes trillions of dollars in federal spending reductions over the next decade, specifically targeting Medicaid and federal nutrition assistance for steep cuts.

House Budget Committee Republicans’ new resolution also calls for the establishment of a “bipartisan debt commission” to examine and propose changes to “the drivers of U.S. debt… such as Social Security and Medicare.” (Social Security does not, in fact, contribute to long-term federal deficits.)

“MAGA Republicans are driving our nation towards a costly government shutdown because they want to make cruel cuts to everything from healthcare to education, and this MAGA Budget doubles down on their extreme cuts,” Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.), the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee, said in response to the new proposal.

“Make no mistake: America is barreling towards a government shutdown because Republicans reneged on the bipartisan budget agreement in their thirst for cruel budget cuts—cuts which will raise the cost of living when it’s already too high,” Boyle added.

The Republican proposal, which has no chance of becoming law given Democratic control of the Senate, would cut federal discretionary spending by nearly $5 trillion over the next decade, Roll Callreported Tuesday. The plan would cut mandatory spending—a category that includes Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)—by nearly $9 trillion over a 10-year period.

The proposal would gash federal Medicaid spending by close to $2 trillion and SNAP by $800 billion. The resolution also calls for punitive new work requirements for the two programs.

“While it is critical families have access to food,” the GOP resolution states, “it is equally critical work-capable households are encouraged to make more responsible choices.”

The budget blueprint comes a day after House Republicans put forth a short-term government funding plan that would impose steep cuts to nondefense discretionary spending. With a government shutdown less than two weeks away, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) “punted plans to tee up a vote” on the widely criticized government funding proposal, Politicoreported Tuesday.

As for the new budget blueprint, it is largely in line with past Republican proposals.

In an analysis on Monday, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) noted that GOP budget plans over the past decade have “proposed large and damaging program cuts across a broad swath of nondefense areas.”

“The proposed cuts disproportionately fell in programs for households with low and moderate incomes,” CBPP observed, “but they were also broad-based and included deep cuts in the part of the budget that funds public services whose funding is provided annually, such as education, medical research, environmental protection, and the administration of the Social Security Administration.”

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  1. JonnyJames

    “…But as we know, in the US, it’s money and not votes that drive politics…”

    That’s exactly right. We have seen for decades that the policy preferences of the public are routinely ignored, we don’t have to read Chomsky to figure that out. Congress crooks are legally bribed, and money is legally defined as “free speech”. The late Sheldon Wolin wrote a book, Democracy Inc. about the rise of what he calls “inverted totalitarianism”. This goes a long way to explain the lack of functioning democracy, as well as other books.

    The MassMedia Cartel push misinformation, distractions and emotionally-manipulative BS on the public non-stop.

    It’s not just the bad ol’ Rs or the maggot crowd that pushes the plutocratic oligarchy’s interests and ignore the vast majority: We could argue that Two D POTUS out-did the Rs: Clinton and Obama. The Common Dreams crowd want us to think that the Ds are the “lesser evil” but the Ds are the “more effective evil”.

    We need to start a national conversation on how to actually hold the plutocratic oligarchy accountable, and make the policy preferences of the public influence legislation and public policy.

    At least most folks here at NC get it, but how do we talk to the average TV watcher who has been misinformed, manipulated, dumbed-down and distracted?

    1. Kuhio

      Hold the plutocrats, oligharchs, rentier class—whatever you want to call them—accountable? Other than global revolutionary actons, there is no stopping the ownership class.

  2. jo6pac

    This will be fun as we watch demodogs hide the fact they’re for cuts also. I’m sure they’ll negotiate so we lose only a small % for now. obomber slice and dice hasn’t gone away.

    1. lyman alpha blob

      Indeed. This article strikes me as a little shrill, and deliberately obtuse.

      Of course this has no chance passing the Senate as-is. But unlike the Democrat party, the Republicans don’t fold on their biggest asks before negotiations have even started. The House will whittle down some of the cuts, but there will still be cuts to these programs, cuts which Biden has shown himself amenable to throughout his far-too-long political career. All the politicians will get exactly what they wanted in the first place – more austerity for the mopes.

      And then everyone in the Beltway and their donors will go have cocktails together while the rest of the populace goes off and dies. Rinse and repeat.

      1. MartyH

        It may have no chance of passing in the House! Let’s hope.

        I wonder how big an increase they approve for “WAR!!!”.

        1. Oh

          I’m waiting for the day when a “progressive” Democrat will attach a huge social security and medicaid increase to a Ukraine WAR funding bill.

          I may not live that long to see it happen.

      2. Reply

        Chumming the waters to get the early adopter fish to bite, generate some headlines and then put the rest of the readers back to sleep. The news cycle is relentless, as certain as death and tax cuts for the connected.

        Kayfabe gets tarnished in Washington.

        When do defense cuts, welfare for illegals and rational policies for ruined cities get addressed? Oh, yeah.

        1. Hepativore

          I am sure that the Grand Bargain is going to resurface under Biden sometime soon, as he might make a last-ditch push for it before or even during the 2024 elections as his administration seems to be oblivious (or does not care) as to how much his polls are sinking.

          If by some miracle he makes it to a second term, I am sure that he (or Harris) will eagerly pick up where Obama left off as the neoliberal Democrats have had their eyes on Social Security for years now

          1. some guy

            Trump could run on Never Ever cutting Social Security. Never. Ever.

            If he said that, and ran on it, what would Biden-Harris say then?

          2. chris

            Yeah. I think you’re right. If it’s the last thing he does before he flatlands, Biden will sign a grand bargain that kills the last of the New Deal in favor of tax reform and spending cuts.

      3. JBird4049

        Yes, my monthly allotment of twenty-three dollars a month in SNAP is far too generous. Cut that 800 million from SNAP and send it to those deserving Neo-Nazis in Ukraine. The official child poverty is only 12.4%

        These people are playing with us, aren’t they? Really, our lives mean nothing at all to them.

        Goldilocks economy my posterior. I am lucky because I have enough to eat and pay my bills, somehow and with the help of my family. Far too many Americans don’t have enough for food. Or they have to choose between not paying for rent, gas, food, utilities, or healthcare each month. It just destroys a person. I cannot imagine how parents deal with such.

        I should expect this after forty years, but somehow they always surprise me with even greater depravity than I expected. Is it too late to wish them to Perdition?

  3. John

    Cuts? First, cut the “defense” budget. Second, cut the “defense budget. Why defense and not milk for babies or watching grandpa dumpster dive? Easily explained. It does not defend. It attacks. It provides endless cash for crappy boondoggles like the Littoral combat ship and the F-35. It provides millions for the executive suites of “defense” industries and yet they cannot produce artillery shells at faster than a walking pace. How do 800 or so world wide bases defend the USA? How does a $250 million drone base in the center of Africa defend the USA?

    Cut the”defense” budget by $250 billion per year and you have a trillion in four years. Since it has proven impossible to audit these expenditures, it leads inescapably to the strong suspicion, the extremely strong suspicion, that there is waste at best, fraud and outright theft in there someplace.

    I have no beef with funding actual defense, but supporting some loon’s idea of a ramshackle and collapsing empire at the expense of everything else is anathema.

    Oh, and the priorities of the Republicans and their fellow travelers reveal them as mean spirited.

  4. Jeff V

    “While it is critical families have access to food,” the GOP resolution states, “it is equally critical work-capable households are encouraged to make more responsible choices.”

    So they are actually coming out and saying they plan to starve people into submission? And everyone expects the “other side” will meet them half way on this.

  5. JohnnyGL

    I’m of two minds on this…

    In one sense, it’s just donor signalling from republicans. Their donors are convinced that there’s lots of potential employees living the good life off these programs, and if only they were slashed…well, suddenly, all these headaches with labor ‘shortages’ would evaporate away.

    However, political realities are such that if Trump wins, they will temporarily forget their budget cutting agenda. These sorts of bills do a lot of work to shore up support for democrats by scaring the democrat voter base into shutting up about all their complaints because…barbarians are at the gates, ready to rape and pillage!!!

    In another sense, it shows how little has changed within the republican party. They still love communicating a desire to pound the deplorables.

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