There's been a building meme that the Democrats did not pass appropriation bills and that's why we're having this budget crisis and passing continuing resolutions and it's Congressional Dems and President's Obama's fault. This has been a constant refrain in the media recently and repeated endlessly by the Republicans. Here's the basic talking point: "We wouldn't be in this situation if the Democrats when they had the majorities in Congress had passed a budget."
True? Have you heard it? Did you kinda agree the Dems should have passed a budget when they had the chance? Have you heard this meme challenged? I looked around at current news outlets and didn't see much so went to the internets and here's what I found.......
Faced with increasing resistance from Republicans and conservative Democrats, Senate Leadership decided on December 16 not to move forward with a $1.108 omnibus appropriations bill
Democrats had been initially optimistic about passing the omnibus, which would have provided about $18 billion over FY 2010 funding levels. However, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and fiscally conservative Republicans expressed strong opposition to the bill, leading a number of moderate Republicans whom had tentatively agreed to vote for the measure to withdraw their support, leaving Senate leadership short of the sixty votes necessary to move to a final vote.
Republicans favored a short-term CR that ended in February, while Democrats wanted the measure to extend for the full 2011 fiscal year. Senate Democrats had hoped to pass a comprehensive omnibus spending measure, but Republicans thwarted their efforts to pass the measure.
December 21, 2010: Senate Republicans block an effort to
complete Fiscal Year 2011 3 appropriations bills, forcing congressional leaders to move a C.R. that funded operations through March 4, 2011, at FY 2010 funding
levels for most programs.
The question is whether Republicans, especially in the Senate, will decide to support the likely package of spending bills. The FY 2011 budget will be the Democrats' last chance to fully shape a budget, since the next two years will involve a lot of compromising between the Democratic Senate and the Republican House if any spending bills are to be completed. At the same time, Republicans in the Senate may choose to stall by passing another CR to fund the government until January, when Republicans take control of the House and there are more Republicans in the Senate.
You may recall the House PASSED a budget before the November elections but Reid never brought it to the floor because he didn't have 60 votes to get it to the floor. Then after the elections the Republicans beat the drum of doing nothing because they would not thwart the 'will of the people' expressed in the election. Hope all this rings a bell and might possibly remind members of the media that it was Republicans who brought us the current situation all while talking about jobs, jobs, jobs in the run up to the election and tax cuts, planned parenthood, EPA, Medicare, etc etc after the election.
It doesn't appear they are negotiating in any faith, looking for common ground, meeting the President halfway, etc. It's about political posturing and electoral gains. It's about tax cuts tax cuts tax cuts, and not investments that create jobs. It's about favors for health insurance companies, the military defense complex the Koch brothers and on and on. It is not about supporting the shrinking middle class, the young, the lf and the sick.
President Obama will make a speech today that will immediately (already has) be analyzed, picked apart and largely trashed. I'm not going to join that train. It's stupid, does nothing to help the country, advance a way forward or help. I just want people to know who's been blocking the budget for the past year or so.