Deficits, debt still on the radar screen

Al Weaver of the Washington Examiner reports that one leading U.S. senator disputes the notion that his congressional colleagues have lost sight of the federal government’s long-term budget problems.

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas, this week rejected the argument that Republicans no longer care about the debt, and said the party will have time later to find some bipartisan solution to rising budget deficits and a total national debt that is quickly approaching $21 trillion.

Conservatives last week were furious at House and Senate leaders for supporting a budget deal that will see federal spending increase by nearly $300 billion over the next two years. The outlines of that budget deal passed the House and Senate, along with language to suspend the debt ceiling for a year and provide billions in new, unpaid-for disaster aid.

The move alienated conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus, who said the deal expands the swamp instead of shrinking it. But when asked, Cornyn said it’s going too far to say the GOP has given up on deficits and debt.

“That’s not true,” he told the Washington Examiner when asked about criticisms that Republicans no longer see debt as an issue.

“They’re right to be concerned,” Cornyn said, referring to the spending agreement. “I’m hopeful we can come up with a bipartisan approach to dealing with the deficits and debt. It’s irresponsible not to do so, but I don’t think that was the time to do it.”

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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