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Debt Ceiling Gimmicks

Recorded on July 26, 2011

From The Heritage Foundation, I'm Ernest Istook.

There's no end to the gimmicks Washington uses to make it sound like they're cutting spending.

The leading Senate plan says that as wars wind down in Iraq and Afghanistan, not providing emergency money for the troops somehow counts as a trillion-dollar spending cut.

The leading plan in the House counts it as savings if we spend less than we had projected—even if actual spending goes up.

And President Obama keeps saying eliminating tax deductions, is cutting spending in the tax code. Everyone else calls that a tax increase. Of course, what could be worse in a bad economy than raising taxes.

It's tough to follow the details because the propaganda is thick. But all these plans have one thing in common—none of them actually reduce spending near as much as sponsors claim. The headlines are misleading unless you dig deep for the details.

From The Heritage Foundation, I'm Ernest Istook.