Alaska delegation cheers 'don't tax, but spend' budget bill

The Alaska Congressional delegation supported a $320 billion addition to the deficit that Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul calls a "bipartisan looting of the treasury."

Paul is right, but he has no credibility. He supported the Republican looting of the treasury in December, cutting taxes by $1.5 trillion without cutting spending, thus exploding the deficit.

Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan and Rep. Don Young, who have lots of practice blaming others for the deficit, defended the "don't tax, but spend" bill by saying it was good for the military and good for Alaska. Like many politicians, they seem incapable of connecting taxes with spending. 

This is really a popularity contest. Taxes are unpopular. Spending is popular. Politicians want to be popular.

The Alaska delegation won't acknowledge the obvious contradiction between the massive tax cut they supported in December and the spending increases they supported in February, with no provisions to pay for it. The tax cut was a reckless act.

Here is what the Alaska delegation said about the budget deal:

Murkowski: “Passage of this legislation ensures our military has the support needed to meet the challenges of an increasingly dangerous world. Providing our armed forces and the veterans who have bravely served us with the resources they need should always remain a top priority. I’m also pleased that through this funding measure, we are giving relief and certainty to the most vulnerable -- from disaster victims to individuals and families in rural areas who use Community Health Centers and to all those who depend on the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).”

Sullivan:  “It lifts the stranglehold sequestration has had on our Armed Forces, which resulted in a 25 percent cut to our military between 2010-2016. Those cuts have hampered our military’s ability to deter aggression and to respond to threats from countries like Russia and North Korea. This agreement paves the way for critical investments for our veterans, our nation’s aging infrastructure, community health centers, and efforts to combat our nation’s growing opioid epidemic – all priorities I’ve pushed for and ones shared by Alaskans and the American people. It also ensures the stationing of the F-35s at Eielson Air Force Base remains on track, and priorities I worked to secure within the FY 2018 National Defense Authorization Act – missile defense, force structure increases, and troop pay raises – can be adequately funded."

Young:  "This bill secures funding for our military to ensure that they have the necessary resources to continue keeping our country safe and carrying out their missions. I worked closely with Members of the House Leadership, my colleagues on the Appropriations Committee and Senators Murkowski and Sullivan to ensure that funds for military construction projects were included so that the Eielson Air Force Base could stay on schedule to prepare for the beddown of the F-35A Joint Strike Fighters."

Dermot Cole2 Comments