**Update: The RSC budget garnered 119 Republican votes, roughly half of the conference. Keep in mind that there are 176 members of the Republican Study Committee. Republican leadership members Cathy McMorris Rodgers and David Dreier switched their votes from yes to no in the last minute in order to thwart a Democrat plan to let the amendment pass by voting present.
Yesterday, Congress voted for the final continuing budget resolution of FY 2011. The House vote was 260-167 and the Senate vote was 81-19. Due to the meager cuts provided in this convoluted budget deal and the fact that it failed to defund Obamacare and Planned Parenthood, 59 Republican congressmen and 15 senators indomitably opposed their leadership and voted against the bill. Republican leadership offered wild gyrations and employed arm twisting to ensure that there wasn’t too much dissent. They even solicited the help of Steny Hoyer to whip up enough Democrats in support of the budget. Nonetheless, enough conservative House members opposed the bill that its final passage was secured only with Democrat support.
Clearly, there are more than 59 unvarnished conservatives in the House who intuitively know that this was a bad deal. Unfortunately, yet understandably, many of them were tepid about undermining their leaders in the last hours of debate. They were all eager to move onto the “real fight”, the 2012 budget. Well, today is their chance to show that they are serious about repudiating the past 80 years of socialism and profligate spending, by voting for the Republican Study Committee budget.
Later today, the House will vote to adopt Paul Ryan’s FY 2012 budget as part of the first step of the budgetary process-a concurrent budget resolution (H.Con.Res. 34). Unlike the Democrats who failed to pass a budget resolution in 2011, Ryan will pass his budget on the exact date, April 15, which is prescribed in the 1974 Budget Act.
The Concurrent Budget Resolution provides a blueprint for the entire congressional budget for the next fiscal year, as well as a plan for the 10-year budget frame. Additionally, the resolution, if adopted, provides a top-line cap – known as a 302(a) allocation – on all discretionary spending, and an individual spending limit on all appropriations subcommittees – known as 302(b) allocations. Ryan’s top-line figure for FY 2012 is $1.019 trillion.
While Ryan’s budget is a great start, it doesn’t cut enough discretionary spending and fails to balance the budget for another 26 years. The RSC, under the leadership of Congressman Jim Jordan, will submit its budget, Honest Solutions, as an amendment to the budget resolution. Their plan will cut $9.1 trillion and balance the budget in 9 years (see our full report here). Every conservative should support this amendment. Call your congressman today and request that they draw a line in the sand and prove that they are worthy of holding public office. Tell them to vote for the RSC budget amendment! After all, this is the real fight, isn’t it?