Because it doles out trillions of dollars in tax cuts to the rich and corporations, the budget approved by House Republicans today — authored by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) — would increase deficits and drive up the national debt. In fact, under the plan, “deficits would never drop below 4.4 percent of GDP, and would rise to more than 5 percent of GDP by 2022.”
Those increases would come despite the gigantic spending cuts that Ryan has in mind, which would eviscerate the social safety net and non-defense discretionary spending (even while the budget increases defense spending). As the Economic Policy Institute noted today, the plan Republicans adopted would drive discretionary spending down to its lowest level in more than 50 years.
EPI pointed out that the non-defense discretionary portion of the budget includes a whole host of things, including, “spending on areas like homeland security, veterans, nuclear weapons, and foreign operations; safety net programs like housing vouchers and nutrition assistance for women and infants; most of the funding for the enforcement of consumer protection, environmental protection, and financial regulation; and practically all of the federal government’s civilian public investments.”