John Boehner ate his final piece of pizza and wiped the sweat from his brow as he nabbed the final vote needed to secure the passage of his debt ceiling bill in the House of Representatives, It wasn’t and easy fight however, prior to securing the votes needed, the house called to delay the bill the previous day. In Boehner’s bill, the country would slash $915 billion from the national debt over the next decade including $22 billion from the 2012 budget. The bill included no revenue, so it was a tough sell to any of the Democrats. The bill failed Thursday night, but after a tongue lashing from their speaker and hard negotiations, the House Republicans agreed to pass it. The deal breaker however, was the one thing that would surely face a big backlash from congressional Democrats, a balance budget amendment. Speaker Boehner was able to get 218 votes, only needing 216 to get the bill passed, all Democrats voted against the bill as well as 22 Republicans. Within a few hours, the bill was off to the Democratic controlled Senate where it died a quick and easy death. The Senate voted down the bill 59-31 and now Senate majority leader Harry Reid will craft his own bill to be voted on and passed on to the house.
What Americans don’t realize is that the way you run your families bills is different from how you run the countries. In a family, you try to spend less than you take in and put money aside for any unfortunate situations. However, in our country things work a bit different. Those “unfortunate” situations occur more often than the average family, we might have wars to fight, natural disasters to attend too and heaven forbid to the Republicans, the poor and the elderly who might need help or students who need loans to get into college. Most Americans agree that we need to curb spending, but the fight over what spending that needs to be cut is the argument families and friends are having at the dinner table and the water cooler. The Republicans seem to have a mental block when it come to helping out anyone who might not be able to pry funds away from their checking account to contribute to their campaign . Seniors, students and the poor have become nothing more than collateral damage to the Republicans in a war to keep the richest Americans on top without having to look at the people they step on. In our country we have responsibilities, and the reason we are able to enjoy the benefits of this great nation is that everyone has to chip in and contribute their fair share.
If you run across right wing bloggers or a conservative talk radio show, the one thing you are bound to come by in defense of taxing the wealthy is that the top 10% pay 90% of the tax burden, These numbers are highly skewed as the top 10% pay nearly 50% of the tax burden but have more than have of the total wealth in the country. According to politifact.com the top 400 wealthiest members of our country have more wealth than the bottom 50%. That figure is correct, 400 people have more money that over 100 million people in our country. While those bottom 50% work hard and pay their tax rate, around 15%, the 400 wealthiest members of our country take their money and put it in off shore bank accounts and don’t pay taxes, or stuff them in stocks, bonds and real estate and pay a capital gains tax of 15%, the same as the poorest Americans. Our country indeed needs change, the change that President Obama promised started slow and has hit a wall, he needs to own the economy at some point but the wall of Republicans standing in his way is a tough one to knock down. If Republicans want to be taken serious when claiming to be “fiscally responsible”, they are going to have to stop trying to break the back of seniors, students and the poor, and ask their rich buddies to put some of their chips on the table too.