by Brian Costin
When it comes to proposing radical changes to government spending, Illinois Democrats vastly outdo Illinois Republicans.
In fact, a group of five liberal Democrats from Illinois propose spending increases that dwarf the spending cut proposals of any Republican in the country by a wide margin.
This information comes from a new National Taxpayers Union Foundation Bill Tally study, which provides a comprehensive overview of the “net spending agenda” of each member of Congress. The study looks at all of the bills sponsored or co-sponsored by each member of Congress. The results give citizens a much better understanding of where their legislators stand on budget issues.
Here’s a look at the Illinois delegation.
Former Democratic Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. was the most radical member in the Illinois congressional delegation. He sponsored bills that would have, on net, increased federal government spending nearly 40 percent, to more than $5 trillion, over the course of the 112th Congress.
Democrat Reps. Danny Davis, Luis Gutierrez, Bobby Rush and Jan Schakowsky also supported bills that, on net, would increase federal government spending by at least 37 percent.
On the other hand, former Republican Rep. Joe Walsh of the Illinois delegation supported the biggest budget cuts. His cuts totaled 13.7 percent, a much smaller change than the percentage increases proposed by the five Illinois House Democrats.
In Illinois, all but one of the Republicans were “net cutters,” and Rep. Bob Dold’s increases were so small his net spending increase percentage was about as close to zero as you can get.
Overall, the Illinois congressional delegation had the ninth-largest average net spending agenda, due primarily to the support of five house Democrats to enact a single-payer, universal health care plan.
In all of Congress, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, had the biggest net spending reduction agenda. He proposed cuts of more than 18 percent. Rep. John Conyers, D-Michigan, had the biggest net spending increase – at 50 percent.
It’s hard to argue that cuts proposed by Walsh, Paul or any other Republican are at all that radical considering that even with those cuts, there would still be a large budget deficit.
Only in Washington, D.C., is trying to balance a budget through spending cuts considered “radical.”