The debate is well worth having.
House conservatives have vowed to block a fiscal 2017 budget put forth by Republican leadership Tuesday, saying it doesn’t cut spending enough and creating uncertainty over the GOP’s ability to pass a fiscal blueprint this year.
Never mind that the blueprint cuts spending by $6.5 trillion over the next 10 years and, if future Congresses stick to the plan would eliminate deficits and so permit beginning to pay down the nation’s $19 trillion debt. The cuts in the first year of these 10 years don’t go far enough to suit these self-styled conservatives (small-c, you’ll note).
It’s certainly true that real cuts in the hand are worth two (or more) promised cuts in later years; however, this is the first budget plan in decades that actually, explicitly promises those later cuts and to that concrete end.
But: as these guys consider blowing up another budget plan, they need to ask themselves how much spending they’ll be able to cut if they force a plan that has no hope of being enacted? What do they think will be the value of their political symbolism?