It’s Your Children’s Money. Quick! Keep Taking It!

Here’s the new fiscal responsibility plan: cut the deficit in half by 2009. Maybe. There’s a major caveat:

In an interview Friday, Joel Kaplan, deputy director of the White House budget office, said Bush would halve the deficit “by pursuing very aggressively his pro-growth economic policies, and by leading the Congress toward overall policies of fiscal restraint. And if the Congress adheres to those two programs, we’ll be successful in halving the deficit from its ’04 peak within that time period.”

I’m pretty sure the Republican Congress is in on the tax cut side. They’re still working on the spending restraint, however (via Atrios).

Seeing this made me want to track down some old Bush quotes about his budget and tax plans. Here’s a nice excerpt from the 2000 campaign website:

Cut Taxes Responsibly: Governor Bush’s $460 billion tax cut over five years will contribute to raising the standard of living for all Americans. His budget uses only about a quarter of the surplus for tax cuts, reserves all Social Security funds for Social Security only, and still leaves extra money for debt reduction, defense, education, and other priorities.

Of course, you have to visit the Internet Wayback Machine to find that promise. For some reason, it’s no longer part of the official site.

Also while wandering the Web for quotes from 2000, I found this from an 11/1/2000 CNN piece:

“We’ve got a surplus in Washington, D.C.,” [Bush] said. “Let me tell you what I think a surplus means. It means the government has got more money than it needs. That’s why it’s called a surplus.

“When you have a surplus, it means our people are overtaxed, that your government is overcharging you. I propose responsible priorities for our surplus — a balanced budget and a fiscally responsible plan.”

But that was then.


P.S. I’m pretty sure that when the administration says (first quote, above) “pursuing very aggressively his pro-growth economic policies” they mean more tax cuts. Yes, tax cuts are stimulative in the short run, but when did Conservatives morph into Keynesians? Must have been some time in early 2001.