Caps Are Not Cuts!
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Lately, there’s been some talk in the news that the fiscal cliff bill has $10 in tax increases for every $1 in spending cuts. Not so fast. When you look at the facts, there are virtually no cuts in the fiscal cliff bill.
In general, the so-called cuts in the bill are caps. And spending caps do not equal spending cuts. To most Americans, cutting spending means actually cutting spending today. In Washington, caps “promise” to control spending in the future.
They generally do this by slowing the rate of growth of government spending in the future–but it usually does not cut spending dollar for dollar. We’ve documented this many times before, such as in this infographic that shows how Congress used caps to find “savings” when they increased the debt ceiling in 2011. In the instance of the fiscal cliff, Congress used “caps” to find $12 billion in savings by lowering the spending caps by $4 billion for fiscal year 2013 and $8 billion for fiscal year 2014. But Congress has a history of blowing past spending caps, as we’ve shown you before.
Cutting spending means cutting spending today. Not promising to cut spending later.
Check out the Pinnable version of the Caps Are Not Cuts image here