Politics has clearly turned ugly. Over-the-top language is now standard. Nancy Pelosi: tax cuts are "Armageddon!” Larry Summers: 10,000 will die!
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Well just wait: The Republicans are about to step onto the third rail of politics—they will propose reforms for health and anti-poverty programs. The left will say you're starving children and seniors. Let the screaming begin.
Speaker Ryan got the ball rolling Wednesday in a radio interview. “Healthcare entitlements" he said, "are the drivers of our debt." No question he's right. He says he's held private conversations with President Trump, who now agrees that Medicare needs to be reined in.
The Republicans have the debt in their sights. The economy is growing, tax cuts look almost certain. Now it’s time to tackle the debt by cutting spending. They've promised this. Next year, they'll do it.
Listen to this from Senate Finance Chair Orin Hatch: "We're spending ourselves into bankruptcy. We're in trouble. You don't help the poor by continually pushing more liberal programs.” Right again, but that’s contentious stuff.
The left is already apoplectic over A) The trump presidency and B) Tax cuts. What do you think they'll do when Medicare and Medicaid face real change? We will be treated to a festival of demagoguery, which will make the current acrimony look tame.
But it has to be done. There will be a debt crisis if we can't reign in spending. It will be a test of financial responsibility.
And I’ll tell you now—I don't want to be lectured by Democrats who doubled our debt in the eight years of the Obama era.