Anger, sadness among some House GOPers over $39 billion CR deal 

Yes, there is a deal between House Speaker John Boehner and congressional Democrats that funds the government for the five-month balance of the 2011 fiscal year and staves off a temporary shutdown.

But in the early hours after announcement of the agreement, there is a sense of anger and resignation rather than relief or victory in some quarters of House GOP.

"The budget deal which the Speaker of the House negotiated could have been easily predicted. From the very beginning of the process it was determined by Republican leadership in the House that there would be no government shutdown. Everything else—every word said on the campaign trail and in the Republican promise statement; everything the Tea Party wanted; every Republican principle—was to be sacrificed solely to fulfill a strategy to stop a shutdown," said a key aide to a Midwestern freshman who requested anonymity.

"He's frustrated to have to choose between the troops on one hand and a good deal on the other," said a top aide to another first-termer in the House.

And from the Senate side, a senior aide with a leading conservative senator described the process as "negotiating with ourselves and the Democrats smelled fear over a shutdown."

Rep. Tim Huelekamp issued a statement shortly after the vote on the agreement, saying:

"The amount of cuts extracted from the President and his Senate Democrats was a step in the right direction, but the American people expected, deserved, and needed much, much more.

"We face a record level of debt, we are in the third year of trillion-dollar deficits, and we are coming close to maxing out the nation's credit card. We have to change course immediately, and this was the opportunity to do so. But yet we are called upon to pass another short-term measure simply to avert a government shutdown.

"In addition to not meeting the budget targets outlined by the Republican conference, this agreement lacks many of the important bipartisan policy provisions my colleagues and I supported: stopping ObamaCare, rolling back the job-killing EPA, and defunding Planned Parenthood. We cannot let our budgetary process be held hostage by the special interests that fuel and fund the Left."

Reactions were somewhat more upbeat In the think tank community. Chris Edwards of the Cato Institute wished there were more than $39 billion in cuts, but noted the annual cuts of whatever amount will have a longer term impact on the spending baseline:

"The average annual spending increase over the last decade was $170 billion, and now we are reversing out just $38 billion.

"However, we know this is politically important. It is a victory for freshman conservative Republicans. The real question is whether this is the beginning of a sustained movement, or a one-shot deal? I’m an optimist, so I think it is the first of many spending-cut actions in coming years, and thus it is significant.

"Also, if the baseline is down $38 billion this year and that is sustained or built upon, it’s down $380 billion or more over 10 years."

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Mark Tapscott

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