In the media

The Real Budget Battle is Coming

Robert Hiltonsmith
The American Prospect

Republicans are hyping their $61 billion cut to this year's budget, but their real targets are Social Security and Medicare.

No, the real budget battle will be the one waged immediately after the current skirmish. House Speaker John Boehner has set his sights on Social Security and Medicare. and plans to cut funding to those programs in when he offers his proposal for next year's budget this spring. These are cuts that will hurt millions of Americans and torpedo the country's growth and prosperity.

Though Boehner didn't specify the size or form of the cuts to the country's two most popular programs, he has likely taken direction from Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, former co-chairs of the president's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. The pair testified in front of the Senate Budget Committee yesterday, painting a picture of a country on the brink of chaos lest Senators adopt the proposals in the report they released in November. "If we wait, we're not going to have to wait long. The crisis is coming," Bowles said.