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Rebuttal to Democrat Fact Sheet Response to Republican No Budget Claim (Budget Staff: Dan Kowalski, ext.

4-0550) In the attached Fact Sheet, Democrat staff contends that the Senate passed a budget with enactment of the Budget Control Act (BCA) last August. Rebuttals to the Democrats major claims follow. Claim: The Budget Control Act enacted in August contained the budget for this year. Fact: The BCA did not contain the budget for this year, but rather provides procedures that make budget points of order operational in the absence of a budget resolution. The BCA authorized the Chairman of the Budget Committee to file in the Senate appropriate budgetary levels for purposes of enforcing Congressional Budget Act and other budgetary points of order in the same manner as for a concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2012 (BCA Sec. 106). This is colloquially known as deeming a budget resolution. Deemers typically have been used to permit the Senate to act on legislation with a budgetary impact in the absence of a conference agreement on a budget resolution passing both House and Senate. The BCA marks the first time that a deeming resolution has been adopted in the Senate without a budget markup in the Senate Budget Committee. Claim: The Budget Control Act achieved all of the essential elements of a traditional budget. Fact: A budget resolution is defined in Sec. 301 of the Congressional Budget Act as a concurrent resolution containing, among other things, totals of new budget authority and outlays, surplus or deficit in the budget, and the public debt. The BCA contained none of those basic and important budgetary aggregates, each of which would have been known had the Senate truly considered a budget. Unlike a traditional budget, the BCA deemer received no public debate prior to adoption, and is a placeholder based on Congressional Budget Office baseline estimates

rather than a thoughtful and serious financial plan for the federal government. Claim: The Budget Control Act was even more extensive than a traditional budget. Fact: A traditional budget resolution is superior to a deeming resolution. A budget resolution conference agreement can provide reconciliation instructions to authorizing committees to compel the oversight and review of mandatory spending programs and the federal tax code. Reconciliation instructions are established based on the input of the authorizing committees through views and estimates submitted to the Budget Committee and debated in the Budget Committee. They are perfected on the floor of the House and Senate through amendments, and agreed as binding on both House and Senate through the adoption of a budget resolution conference report. The Budget Control Act did not deem reconciliation instructions to the authorizing committees. The expedited procedures provided to the work product of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (Super Committee) established by the BCA is not an enhanced version of the reconciliation process as claimed by Budget Committee Democrat staff. In truth, the enhanced procedures in the BCA were a weak substitute for reconciliation instructions. While reconciliation instructions are based on public deliberation and unanimity of purpose, the BCA expedited procedures were the product of secret negotiations hastily brought before the Senate for a vote hours before a government default, and did not embody a plan for how the deficit should be reduced. It is therefore not surprising that the Super Committee failed to reach agreement. Claim: Congress did pass a budget. Fact: Congress did not pass a budget. The deeming resolution included in the BCA applies only to the Senate. The House of Representatives had no input into the Senate deemer, and in fact is operating under a different budget plan. Congress agreed to discretionary spending caps in the BCA, but not a budget as that term is properly understood.