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The Republican Study Committee (membership: 165) is circulating a plan that would cut $2.5 trillion from the budget over the next decade, ALL of it coming from non-defense discretionary spending. No committment from the leadership yet on this plan, but this is the first list I've seen laying out specific ideas for cutting the budget, and there are no surprises...

The plan targets mass transit, support for the poor, federal workers and of course, the "job killing/destroying/anhilating/demolishing" health care law. Excerpt from Congressional Quarterly...

The measure includes more than 100 specific program reductions or eliminations, demonstrating Republican policy priorities. The RSC said those changes would produce $376 billion in savings over 10 years.

Among other cuts, the bill would eliminate automatic pay increases for federal civilian employees for five years and cut the civilian workforce by 15 percent through attrition.

Several mass transit programs would be cut under the measure.

The legislation would eliminate funding for Amtrak subsidies, a move that would save $1.6 billion. It also would eliminate intercity and high-speed rail grants, producing a savings of $2.5 billion annually, and it would strike the subsidy for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, resulting in $150 million in annual savings.

The bill would strike funding for the Community Development Block Grant Program, which enjoys broad support in the Democratic Caucus, saving $4.5 billion annually.

The measure would end federal control of mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which were seized by the government in September 2008 and have so far cost taxpayers more than $150 billion. The RSC says ending that government support would produce $30 billion in total savings.

The legislation also would repeal increased federal money that helps states cover the cost of the Medicaid program, which provides health care for the poor. The RSC says that change would save $16.1 billion.

In addition, it would bar any fiscal 2011 funding from being used to carry out any provisions of the health care law (PL 111-148, PL 111-152) or to defend the law against litigation.

FULL STORY HERE  (subscription only)


Speaking with reporters outside the White House today, the Republican Mayor of Oklahoma City said Congress needs to stay away from Community Development Block Grants (part of the list above) because they provide essential dollars for investing in infrastructure! Here we see a sober-minded Republican politician taking the high road and acting responsibly while his colleagues in the Congress resort to grandstanding in order to placate the Tea Partyiers.

Originally posted to Hy on Thu Jan 20, 2011 at 09:56 AM PST.

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