Republicans should be chomping at the bit to do a budget this year, Stan Collender writes at Forbes.
After all, a fiscal 2019 budget resolution would be the GOP’s first opportunity to showcase the projected benefits of their policy changes — how the tax cuts passed last year would unleash enough growth to pay for themselves, or how the party’s economic plan would lead to a balanced budget within 10 years.
A budget could also allow Republicans to once again try to enact parts of their legislative agenda through reconciliation, the same way they pushed through their tax bill. Without the option of reconciliation, technical corrections to the tax bill, cuts to Medicaid and social welfare programs and most of the president’s infrastructure plan will be “virtually impossible.”
So why are Republicans signaling that they might skip a budget resolution altogether?
“Because the vote on the 2019 budget — the last one Congress will consider before the 2018 midterm elections — will reveal that all the Republican promises on the deficit and debt, including its blind belief on dynamic scoring, were completely bogus,” Collender argues. “But no budget resolution will mean no hearings in the budget committees, no floor debate, much less media attention and, most importantly, no votes. That makes it a great...and maybe the best...way for congressional Republicans to avoid talking about or taking responsibility for the spiking deficit and debt they said wouldn't occur.”