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Friday, November 04, 2005 

Congress Works To Cut Spending (And Pigs Fly!)

(Fox News) WASHINGTON — The Senate on Thursday narrowly approved the first cuts since 1997 to benefit programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and farm subsidies, giving Republicans a modest victory against ever-rising government spending. The bill, passed by a 52-47 vote, makes mild cuts to the health care programs for the elderly, poor and disabled, but leaves the food stamp program untouched. The measure also permits exploratory oil drilling in an Alaskan wilderness area. Five Republicans in the GOP-controlled Senate who oppose the drilling vote against the bill.

5 years, and a couple 500 billion later, the Republican White House and Congress decide to actually push through some conservative ideas with fiscally responsible solutions to the wallet woes of the government.

Well, not quite:
Still, there is plenty of sugar to go along with the fiscal medicine. The bill contains about $35 billion in new spending to go along with the cuts:
— Doctors would get an $11 billion reprieve next year from a scheduled 4.3 percent cut in their Medicare payments.
— Dairy farmers won a $1 billion extension of milk income payments.
— College students would get more than $8 billion in new grants.
— More disabled children would retain Medicaid health coverage.

Notice the Medicare benefit cuts above, but the Medicare payments to doctors get a "reprieve" from cuts? Which lobbyist and which politician worked that one out?
Drunk with Spending, Congress continues.