ABC News’ Matthew Jaffe reports:
The Republican response to President Obama’s budget proposal has been swift and straightforward: the budget does not go far enough in cutting the nation’s soaring deficits.
That was the argument laid out by the Senate’s top Republican Mitch McConnell as he took to the Senate floor to blast the White House proposal.
“The President's budget is the clearest sign yet he simply does not take our fiscal problems seriously,” McConnell said. “It is a patronizing plan that says to the American people that their concerns are not his concerns. It’s a plan that says fulfilling the President’s vision of a future of trains and windmills is more important than a balanced checkbook.”
“The President’s budget comes in at close to a thousand pages. The people who voted for a new direction in November have a five-word response: We don’t have the money. We don’t have the money.”
That was a mantra that McConnell repeated a few more times in his remarks.
“The White House wants us to engage in a debate this week about percentage cuts at this or that agency, about multi-year projections and CBO scores. It all misses the point. The real point is this: We're broke. We don't have the money.”
“This budget was an opportunity for the President to lead. He punted,” McConnell said. “It only pretends to do the things people want. And the reaction we’ve seen from across the political spectrum so far today suggests that nobody’s buying it.”
“This is a status quo budget at a time when serious action is needed. This is business as usual at a time when bold, creative solutions are needed. This is not an I-got-the-message budget. It’s unserious, and it’s irresponsible. We need to look for ways to preserve what’s good that does not put us on path to bankruptcy. That was the challenge of this budget. The administration failed the test.”
“We need a President who gets it. And this President clearly does not get it yet.”
Those last comments echo McConnell’s remarks last year that his top goal was for President Obama not to win a second term in the Oval Office.
The Kentucky lawmaker told National Journal magazine in October that “the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
Then last weekend McConnell told a crowd in Kentucky that the Obama agenda was “over.”