I know that we have been joking a lot about Mitt's remark about firing Big Bird during the debates, but putting all jokes aside; there was nothing funny about what Mitt said. It shouldn't only be the kids and Jim Lehrer who are distressed about Mitt's declarations.
Let's get serious about policy for a minute. How, exactly, does Mitt plan to make up the five trillion dollars in taxes he is cutting for the wealthy among us? ("I don't have a 5 trillion dollar tax cut". Yeah right, Mitt.) Does Mitt really believe that he can make up this revenue by simply cutting funding to PBS? Here is a fact: The PBS budget is approximately 0.012% of the federal budget. And it's not just the fact that Neil deGrasse Tyson tweeted it. ("Cutting PBS support 0.012% of budget to help balance the Federal budget is like deleting text files to make room on your 500Gig hard drive".) Those percentages are real.
"Governor Mitt Romney’s proposals to cap total federal spending at 20 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and boost defense spending to 4 percent of GDP would require very large cuts in other programs, both entitlements and discretionary programs.
This update of an earlier analysis is based on updated economic and budget projections that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued this summer and additional information that the Romney campaign has provided on his budget proposals. The resulting estimates of the required budget cuts are somewhat smaller than the ones we released on May 21, but they are still very deep.
For the most part, Governor Romney has not outlined cuts in specific programs. But if policymakers repealed health reform (the Affordable Care Act, or ACA) and exempted Social Security from cuts, as Romney has suggested, and cut Medicare, Medicaid, and all other entitlement and discretionary programs by the same percentage to meet Romney’s overall spending cap and defense spending target, then they would have to cut non-defense programs other than Social Security by 22 percent in 2016 and 34 percent in 2022 (see Figure 1). If they exempted Medicare from cuts for this period, the cuts in other programs would have to be even more dramatic — 32 percent in 2016 and 53 percent in 2022." [Source]
Mitt has a long way to make up all that revenue he is talking about taking out of the budget. Where is the money going to come from? You can't make it up by adding to the military budget, and you sure as hell can't make it up by firing poor Big Bird.
Sadly, Mitt, along with his republican colleagues, has vowed not to raise taxes. This goes contrary to the wishes of the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles Commission who declared that we cannot solve the country's fiscal problems without "raising revenue and cutting spending".
You black folks in Virginia better keep these facts in your mind when the robocalls start coming in.
"The Romney campaign has launched a robocall campaign in, at least, Virginia, featuring a disaffected Obama supporter who says she will give the Massachusetts Republican a chance in this election.
The call, which was flagged by Shaun Dakin, CEO and founder of StopPoliticalCalls.org, features a woman named Marketa explaining her disappointments after voting for the president in 2008.
"When I voted for Obama I was looking for a new start with the president. I was really hopeful and faithful about his promises. Obama, I've been seeing what you've been doing for four years and honestly it has not been beneficial to me or my family. All the talk he did, all the speeches, at the end of the day I feel like he still forgot about us. I want to weigh the options I want to see maybe what Romney can offer." [Source]
Marketa, I sure hope that the gun they held to your head wasn't loaded.