Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), facing heat for his less than fiscally conservative record, is trying his best to appease the Republican base. During a conference call with reporters last week, Chambliss echoed a familiar line that we’ve heard from Republicans since they rolled over during the “fiscal cliff” debate:
Obama has promised not to get entangled in protracted negotiations during March’s vote on raising the federal debt limit and the extension of the spending authorization like those that dragged on for weeks before the “fiscal cliff” of sweeping spending cuts and tax increases that triggered automatically at midnight Monday.
The Georgia Republican dismissed that promise.
“My message to you, Mr. President, is you’d better strap on your chin strap very tight because this junkyard dog is going to address spending cuts and entitlement reform in the debt-ceiling debate, and that’s going to be a line in the sand for us Republicans and conservatives,” Chambliss said.
Sorry, but the idea that Chambliss is a “junkyard dog” on spending cuts and entitlement reform is patently absurd. Chambliss voted for every single one of George W. Bush’s bloated budgets. Chambliss has voted for every farm bill, with the except of the version brought before the Senate last year — and the only reason he voted against it was because it “[didn’t] treat southern crops fairly.” When President Obama’s proposed spending cuts to the 2009 version of the farm bill, Chambliss opposed them.
Chambliss has been terrible on entitlements. In 2003, he voted for Medicare Part D, adding trillions in unfunded liabilities to an already bankrupt government-run health care program. Chambliss helped make bailouts a permanent fixture in public policy with his support of TARP.
This is just a sample of Chambliss’ record. We’re not getting to earmarks, his refusal to even consider defense spending cuts, or his working to raise taxes by $1 trillion. Like many Republicans, Chambliss is part of the problem with Washington. He has no credibility when it comes to reducing the size and scope of government. The best thing Georgians can do is send him packing in 2014.