Mike Huckabee’s solution to debt ceiling crisis: Let the Democrats have their way

Cut Cap Balance Debt Ceiling Republicans

On Saturday’s Huckabee Show (July 16, 2011) Mike Huckabee opened up the show with the following statement: 

The Republicans ought to put forth their plan and advance it as far as it will go and then make clear where they stand. If they can’t get the “Cut, Cap and Balance” through the Senate and the White House, then at least they have made their stand. Then it is going to be up the the President and the Democrats to put a real plan on the table. Let them propose it and support and send it to the House.The House ought to pass it, not because they like it, but to give the Democrats full ownership of their plan.The government will then operate and we will not lose our credit rating, but then the constrast is set between two very clear directions for the next eletions. Spend and tax more or “Cut, Cap and Balance”. As a Republican I would glad to run on that platform instead of spend and tax anyday. What do you think? Well you can let me know at MikeHuckabee.com

I did take Mike Huckabee’s suggestion and email my thoughts on his statement. Below is the email. 

Dear Governor Huckabee,

I have supported you since 1992 when you ran for Senator in Arkansas against Dale Bumpers. My close friends and relatives of mine have been on the street campaigning for you even to following you to Iowa in 2008 and going door to door for you. 

Since 2008 we have been tuning in to see your show every week and have been telling our friends about that. I have especially enjoyed the first part of every program where you give your take on the current political talk of the day. Occasionally I do disagree with you on some things and today I find it is one of those days. 

The problem with your suggestion that Republicans vote for the Democrat plan in the House is what I would consider an “epic cave in.” There are two reasons this would not be a good course of action.

First, Republican primary voters will hold Republicans accountable for voting to hand over our future to the Democrats. How can a Democrat or a Republican turn their back on their core beliefs just to allow the other side the opportunity to mess up? 

Second, if Republicans hold firm then the Democrats will come to deal concerning serious budget cuts. I do admit that they may instead try McConnell’s alternative where President Obama becomes basically a dictator. If that does occur then it will truly become the election issue that you talk about. That is much different than caving into what they want by voting for it.  Chris Edwards of the Cato Institute had an excellent article along these lines. 

McConnell’s Cave-In and Boehner’s Opportunity

Posted by Chris Edwards

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has offered the president a way to raise the debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion without having to cut spending. The WaPo reports that “McConnell’s strategy makes no provision for spending cuts to be enacted.”

This appears to be an epic cave-in and completely at odds with McConnell’s own pronouncements in recent months that major budget reforms must be tied to any debt-limit increase.

House Republicans should obviously reject McConnell’s surrender, and they should do what they should have done months ago. They should put together a package of $2 trillion in real spending cuts taken straight from the Obama fiscal commission report and pass it through the House tied to a debt-limit increase of $2 trillion. Then they shouldn’t budge unless the White House and/or the Senate produce their own $2 trillion packages of real spending cuts, which could be the basis of negotiating a final spending-cut deal.

For those who say that House tea party members won’t vote for a debt increase, I’d say that $2 trillion in spending cuts looks a lot better than the alternative of having Democrats and liberal Republicans doing an end-run around them with McConnell’s no-cut plan.

For those who say that House members are scared of voting for specific spending cuts, I’d say that they’ve already done it by passing the Paul Ryan budget plan. I’d also say that you can’t claim to be the party of spending cuts without voting for spending cuts.

Obama’s Fiscal Commission handed Republicans ready-made spending cuts on a silver platter—Republicans will never get better political cover for insisting on spending cuts than now.

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