By Robert Romano
A battle has broken out between the tea party movement and House
Republicans over just what the now-enacted continuing resolution (CR)
for fiscal year 2011 will achieve in real savings. Activists have been
responding to AP reports that the resolution cutting $38.5 billion would only result in $352 million in actual cuts to outlays in 2011.
How can this be?
The difference is between the not-commonly-understood “budgeting
authority” for 2011 versus outlays that will actually occur in 2011.
Here’s the facts: the 2011 CR addresses the non-emergency budgeting authority for 2011.
It authorizes $1.049 trillion of spending versus the total $1.364
trillion discretionary portion of the budget that will actually be spent
this year. Why the difference?
Because discretionary outlays for 2011 serve as a function of the 2011 non-emergency budgeting authority plus the war supplemental plus budgeting
authorities enacted by previous Congresses. All that was on the table
with the continuing resolution was the non-emergency portion, and a
small portion of mandatory spending.
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