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Just no money to spend ...

December 26, 2008 - Lee Smith
I find it more than mildly ironic that as Congress and the Minnesota Legislature are about to reconvene, (large majorities of) Democrats will be in charge of both bodies ... and they'll be broke. Somewhere the political gods are smiling down on fiscal conservatives.

Nationally, there is a $1 trillion budget deficit anticipated, even while Social Security and Medicare are going bust, threatening even more red ink in the future. The downturn in the economy shows that the private sector is the goose that lays the golden eggs. Government revenues are plummeting. Does it seem likely that lawmakers will learn to nurture, rather than punish, this benevolence? Well, it still sounds like the Democrats want national health care. Good luck paying for it, boys and girls.

In Minnesota, there is a nearly $5 billion state budget deficit. Cities, counties, schools, human services and others are facing cuts. Actually, these "cuts" are reductions in anticipated increases, so the state should survive if it can prioritize its spending. Don't look for new programs, though. This must be killing the big-spenders in St. Paul. You know, the ones who gave us the $6 billion road and bridges boondoggle last session.

And should you worry about tax hikes, don't. Even the Democrats have learned that you don't raise taxes during a recession. Unless you want to extend it.


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