Can we balance the budget with the Republican’s tax/spending cuts?

Short answer: No

Howard Gleckman of the Tax Policy Center posted this analysis of how one might balance the budget by 2020, given the permanent extension of Bush’s tax cuts.  This is to be accomplished by making vague spending cuts — and, by the way, not touching Social Security, Medicare, Defense and Veteran’s benefits, and interest payments — more or less what the Republicans sometimes say they want to do (when they’re not talking about privatizing Social Security).  The result of the analysis is that you will be left with essentially no government:

“What’s left? Well, McConnell would have to abolish all the rest of government to get to balance by 2020. Everything. No more national parks, no more Small Business Administration loans, no more export subsidies, no more NIH. No more Medicaid (one-third of its budget pays for long-term care for our parents and others with disabilities). No more child health or child nutrition programs. No more highway construction. No more homeland security. Oh, and no more Congress. No more nothin’.

We’re not talking about a temporary 1995-like government shut-down here. We are talking about a government that exists only to fund national defense, provide benefits to the already- or soon-to-be retired, and pay interest to the Chinese and our other lenders.”

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