Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post has moved the Coleman race from rank 6 to 5 — which might explain why this week Coleman was running away from his record on supporting the Bush Budget….
The Truth About Norm:
Running Away from years of supporting the Bush Budget
Senator Norm Coleman expressed his concern about the Bush Budget this week in a written statement criticizing the current deficit and some of the President’s spending priorities. But the fact is that Coleman consistently supported previous Bush budgets that led the federal government into its current financial mess.
Coleman Followed Bush’s Lead, Opposed Federal Spending Limits
2003: Coleman Voted for Bush Budget that Increased Deficit to $2.4 Trillion Over 10 Years. In April of 2003, Coleman for the final budget resolution, which allowed for new tax cuts of up to $550 billion. The budget resolution would increase the federal deficit to record levels of $347 billion in 2003, $385 billion in 2004 and would increase the deficit by $2.4 trillion by 2013. The budget resolution narrowly passed, with Dick Cheney stepping in to break the 50-50 tie. [HConRes 95, 4/11/03, Vote #134; Associated Press, 4/11/03; Democratic Policy Committee, Summary of the FY04 Republican Budget Conference Report, 4/11/03; Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 4/17/03, www.cbpp.org/4-16-03tax.htm]
Coleman Now Says Congress Needs to "Do More to Address Spending in Washington. In a released statement reacting to the President’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2009, Norm Coleman said: "While I am encouraged by the President’s overall goal of balancing the budget by 2012, the fact is the federal budget has ballooned to over $3 trillion and the deficit is slated to increase in the short-term due to the combination of difficult economic times, the price tag of the proposed stimulus package, and the on-going costs of the war. Certainly we must do more to address spending in Washington; but raising taxes is not the answer." [Office of Senator Norm Coleman, Statement, 2/4/08]
Coleman Opposed Pay-As-You-Go Spending Limits. Since 2003, Coleman has voted at least five times against measures to create pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) rules to restrict deficit spending. Coleman voted with the majority of Republicans in each of these votes against spending limits. [SConRes 21, Vote #172, 5/17/07; S1932, Vote #283, 11/3/05; S2020, Vote #340, 11/17/05; SConRes 18, Vote #53, 3/16/05; SConRes 95, Vote #38, 3/10/04; HJRes 51, Vote #200, 5/23/03]
2006: Coleman Voted to Increase Deficit by $168B. In April of 2005, Coleman voted for the FY06 budget, to set broad spending and revenue targets over the next five years. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that the budget resolution would increase deficits by $168 billion and debt by more than $600 billion annually. The resolution would allow up to $848.8 billion in discretionary spending for fiscal year 2006 and call for $17 billion in cuts in mandatory spending over five years. It also would give procedural protection to legislation authorizing oil drilling in part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. [SConRes18, Vote #114, 4/28/05; www.cbpp.org/4-28-05bud.htm]
Coleman Followed Bush’s Lead, Voted Against Expanding Healthcare to Uninsured
2004: Coleman Voted Against Increasing Healthcare for Uninsured Americans. Coleman voted against an amendment to increase spending by $60 billion over five years to provide health insurance coverage for Americans without insurance. [SCon Res 95, Vote # 47, 3/11/04; Congressional Quarterly, 3/11/04]
Coleman Now Says He’s Concerned About Diminished Healthcare Under Bush’s Budget. Reacting to President Bush’s proposed FY09 budget, Coleman said: "I am concerned, however, that the reductions proposed by the President’s budget could result in diminished quality and quantity of healthcare for our most vulnerable populations, and I don’t expect the Senate to follow the President’s lead on these." [Office of Senator Norm Coleman, Statement, 2/4/08]
Coleman Followed Bush’s Lead, Supported Cuts to Medicaid
2005: Coleman Supported Cuts to Medicaid and Medicare. In 2005, Coleman voted with the majority of Republicans for a budget resolution that would cut spending by nearly $40 billion over five years, which included cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, student loans and child support enforcement. [S1932, Vote # 363, 12/21/05]
Coleman Now Says He’s Concerned About Cutting Programs for Seniors and Poor Families. Reacting to President Bush’s proposed FY09 budget, Coleman said: "At the same time, we need to be mindful of the impact of cutting programs that are crucial to Minnesotans. I am concerned about the proposed reductions in programs that put food on the table for seniors in need, keep impoverished families warm during the winter months, and help urban and rural communities." [Office of Senator Norm Coleman, Statement, 2/4/08]