Irene to Prompt Spending Fight

Republican leaders may be eager to avoid another fight on spending,  but with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) running low on cash and the mounting damage from Hurricane Irene, that will be difficult.

Speaking on Fox News yesterday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said additional funding for FEMA was “appropriate” but “those monies are not unlimited.  And what we’ve always said is, we’ve offset that which has already been funded.”  Given our massive deficits and mounting debt, finding offsets seems quite reasonable.

Yet, National Public Radio reports, Senate Democrats are “unlikely” to embrace the “offsets demanded by House Republicans.”  In fact, the House has already passed a bill that would appropriate – and offset – an additional $1 billion this year and $2.65 billion next year into the disaster relief fund.

Whether the Washington Establishment likes it or not, we’re in for another spending fight.  But finding an offset shouldn’t be too hard.  Over the past decade, federal outlays have increased, on average, by more than $160 billion per year.

Read more: Common-Sense Spending Cuts in Exchange for More FEMA Aid

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