If you count yourself among those addicted to C-SPAN, you will likely know that the House of Representatives narrowly (216-210) approved a budget resolution for fiscal year 2008 on 29 March 2007. Indeed, both sides of the aisle have dedicated considerable rhetorical effort to this year's budget debate, and both sides accurately noting that the budget is important because it defines our government's priorities. It is in articulating these priorities where issues arise. The resolution is also important because it establishes spending levels and spending rules under which the appropriations process will take place.

According to House Democrats, the resolution, which would allow spending to reach nearly $3 trillion, will balance the budget by 2012. House Democrats also disagree with Republican statements that the budget will increase taxes, noting that 2001 and 2003 tax cuts will remain in effect until their current expiration - generally between 2007 and 2010.

Significantly, the budget resolution reinstates a "pay go" system (pay as you go), which means that any new project or program to be funded will require offsetting its cost through reductions to other programs or through the establishment of new revenue sources.


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