AP - Republican front-runner Mitt Romney says he would have supported a plan by congressional Republicans to cut spending and force a vote on a federal balanced budget amendment to address the nation's debt crisis.
Congressional Republicans don’t want any more deficit spending–unless it’s deficit spending done through the tax code. They think they can play a good game of “chicken” when it comes to the statutory debt ceiling by refusing to raise it, as discussed in this AP story by Douglass Daniel (emphasis added):
WASHINGTON — Hillary Rodham Clinton strove to close the book on the worst episode of her tenure as secretary of state Thursday, battling hours of Republican questions in a hearing that grew contentious but revealed little new about the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya. She firmly defended her record while seeking to avoid any mishap that might damage her presidential campaign.
Democrats have accused the Republicans of using the investigation as a ploy to derail Clinton’s White House bid, noting that it is the eighth congressional investigation into the attacks.
House Speaker John Boehner's promise on Wednesday to balance the federal budget "over the next 10 years" was aimed at convincing Tea Party conservatives in Congress to hold their fire over a bill to temporarily raise the U.S. debt ceiling.
GOLAN HEIGHTS — In a renewed attempt to force President Barack Obama's hand on the debt limit, Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul is pushing legislation that would ban federal spending on anything but interest payments on the national debt, Social Security checks, and military salaries.
By Simon Johnson
Some House and Senate Republicans have worked hard to ensure that a “balanced budget” constitutional amendment be included in the mix of policies under consideration to address longer-run fiscal issues in the United States. Such an amendment is presented as way to keep spending and deficits under control, by requiring that federal spending not exceed revenues.
But there are three main problems with this potential approach as it is currently articulated.