WEATHER ALERT:

Download the WSB Radio App and Enable Push Notifications for Storm Updates

ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
63°
Thundershowers
H 68° L 44°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    63°
    Current Conditions
    Thundershowers. H 68° L 44°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    68°
    Today
    Thundershowers. H 68° L 44°
  • heavy-rain-day
    56°
    Tomorrow
    Chance of Rain. H 56° L 44°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

National Govt & Politics
As deficit soars, House to vote on GOP balanced budget amendment
Close

As deficit soars, House to vote on GOP balanced budget amendment

As deficit soars, House to vote on GOP balanced budget amendment
Photo Credit: Jamie Dupree

As deficit soars, House to vote on GOP balanced budget amendment

A day after new numbers from the Trump Administration showed a sharp increase in the budget deficit for the current fiscal year, and two days after fresh predictions that yearly federal deficits will top $1 trillion in two years, the House will vote Thursday on a Republican plan for an amendment to the Constitution that would require a balanced budget.

The plan has little chance of success, and seems to have only exacerbated tensions inside the GOP over budget discipline.

"This upcoming balanced budget amendment shouldn’t be called a BBA; it should be called a CYA," said Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), one of a number of fiscal hawks who feel their own party has abandoned a core principle of budget sanity.

The vote comes several weeks after the Congress approved a big increase in both defense and domestic spending as part of a two-year budget deal, which left conservatives infuriated.

A two-thirds super-majority is needed to approve an Amendment to the Constitution, and then send it on to the states for ratification.

With 237 GOP lawmakers, Republicans are certain to fall far short of the magic number on Thursday.

GOP leaders in the Congress have talked for years about balancing the budget - always portraying Democrats as the big spenders - but Republicans have never come close to detailing or approving the actual cuts needed to stop the tide of red ink.

Since gaining back control of Congress in the 2010 elections, GOP budget outlines proposed a balanced budget - but each time it would have taken up to ten years to reach that point.

Democrats denounced the GOP plan as nothing more than a charade, arguing Republicans exploded the deficit with a $1.5 trillion tax cut plan approved at the end of last year.

"This is just a cynical political ploy," said Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), as Democrats say the GOP goal is simple - cut entitlement spending.

"This Balanced Budget Consitutional Amendment is laying the groundwork for an attack on Medicare, on Medicaid, and on Social Security," said Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL).

There have only been four years since 1969 when the federal government has not run a deficit - between 1998 and 2001.

Otherwise, it's been a growing river of red ink.

Here is a list of yearly federal budget deficits since Fiscal Year 2007:

2007 - $160.7 billion

2008 - $458.6 billion

2009 - $1.412 trillion

2010 - $1.294 trillion

2011 - $1.299 trillion

2012 - $1.087 trillion

2013 - $679.5 billion

2014 - $484.6 billion

2015 - $434.5 billion

2016 - $584.6 billion

2017 - $665.3 billion

The latest figures out from the Treasury Department on Tuesday showed 2018 will most certainly have a higher deficit than a year ago - the deficit for March was $209 billion, putting the deficit so far this year at $599 billion.

In March, the federal government spent $420 billion, but brought in just $211 billion in revenues.

The updated Congressional Budget Office estimate for 2018 is a deficit of $804 billion.

The CBO predicted a $981 billion deficit in 2019, followed by deficits over $1 trillion. There were four yearly deficits over that mark in the Obama Administration.

Read More

News

  • Who will sit on the Iron Throne when “Game of Thrones” ends its run later this year? You can -- well, sort of. >> Read more trending news  A student at a Kentucky welding school built a 200-pound replica of the Iron Throne as a wedding gift for his wife, WLKY reported. He is also renting it out, the television station reported. Michael Hayes is a student at the Knight School of Welding in Louisville. He and his instructors spent nearly 110 hours over two months to craft the throne, which includes 400 swords, WLKY reported. The school funded the project, which cost $7,000. The throne is not made of iron or steel, but aluminum, otherwise “it would pretty much stay wherever it sat,' Hayes told the television station. Hayes said he made the throne as a wedding gift for his wife, Kacie Hayes. 'The show is one of the first things my wife and I bonded over,” Michael Hayes told WLKY. “It's a really important thing to us.” >>  Social media reacts to season premiere of ‘Game of Thrones’ The throne was a centerpiece at the Hayes’ wedding, and the couple struck a pose similar to ones by “Game of Thrones” characters Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. 'Besides the awesome fact that my wife pretty much does look like Daenerys, especially when she's in her get-up,” Michael Hayes told WLKY. “It made it all the more awesome when I could see her sitting in the throne and doing her thing. It's just been awesome.” Hayes said if you want to rent the throne, email him at mqhayes1@yahoo.com, WLKY reported.
  • “I am in the middle of the expressway with a donkey,” an Illinois deputy said Wednesday, agitated as she called for backup. >> Read more trending news  The Cook County Sheriff’s deputy was not referring to a driver on I-90. She was seeking help after a real donkey escaped from a trailer shortly before noon, WBBM reported. Body cam footage showed the deputy trying to coax the donkey, named Dusty, to the side of the road, away from vehicles barreling down the interstate, the television station reported. “Come here, come here, sweetie,” the deputy told the donkey. She then radioed her dispatcher, telling officials that “You wanna call the state or something, somebody lost their donkey, county,” WMAQ reported. >> Two donkeys found mauled to death in Louisville According to the Cook County Sheriff’s Office Twitter account, Dusty, was safely returned to his owner.
  • An Australian man rescued his 14-month-old son Friday, after the child was dragged away from his bed by a wild dingo, 9News Australia reported. >> Read more trending news  The toddler was sleeping inside a camper on a remote area of Fraser Island in Queensland when two of the wild dogs entered the vehicle. One of them bit the child’s neck, Radio New Zealand reported. Paramedic Ben Du Toit said the dingo began dragging the child into the bush, 9News Australia reported. 'The parents awoke with the toddler crying and heard the crying getting further away from the campervan,' Du Toit told the network. The child’s father ran outside and rescued the boy from the jaws of the dog, CNN reported. The boy suffered two deep cuts to the top of his neck and minor cuts to his scalp, Radio New Zealand reported. He was airlifted to a hospital for treatment and was in stable condition, CNN reported. 'If it wasn't for the parents and their quick thinking and fighting off the dingoes, he probably would have had more severe injuries,' Lifeflight pilot Frank Bertoli said at a news conference.
  • A Texas woman was sentenced to 15 years in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to stealing $1.3 million from the Fort Worth Stockyards Rodeo, using the money to finance vacations and two motorcycles, WFAA reported. >> Read more trending news  D’Ann Elizabeth Wagner, of Fort Worth, was a bookkeeper for the rodeo, the television station reported. She was sentenced in Tarrant County District Court. According to prosecutors, Wagner used a PayPal account on the rodeo’s website she set up and was linked to her personal information, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. PayPal issued a debit card to manage the money, which Wagner used for her personal use, the newspaper reported. Investigators found more than 11,000 transactions between January 2014 and March 2017, totaling more than $1.3 million. She used the money for vacations and gambling, bought two Harley-Davidson motorcycles and made other unspecified purchases, WFAA reported. “This defendant stole more than six times the minimum threshold for this first-degree felony charge,” Tarrant County Assistant District Attorney Brooke Panuthos said in a statement. “She had 11,000 chances to stop her criminal behavior and stop stealing from employers who trusted her. She showed no conscience and no remorse for her actions.”
  • A Michigan man accused of intentionally shooting his 2-year-old son in the face was arraigned in court Thursday, MLive reported. >> Read more trending news  Michael Christopher Glance, 32, is charged with three counts each of assault with intent to murder and felony firearms, the website reported. He is being held in lieu of a $10 million bond, WILX reported. The incident occurred in Blackman Township on Tuesday, the television station reported. It happened while Glance allegedly was arguing with Nicole McCarthy, the boy’s mother, MLive reported. “For whatever reason, Mr. Glance decided to take his anger out on his 2-year-old child that day,” Jackson County Chief Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Kati Rezmierski said in court. During an argument between the couple, Glance allegedly held a pistol to his son’s temple and pulled the trigger, Rezmierski said. The gun did not fire, she said. McCarthy took the boy to her car and put him in his car seat, MLive reported. She was getting ready to leave when Glance allegedly came out of the couple’s home with a shotgun and fired at their son, according to the website. The child was taken to a hospital and was in critical condition, WILX reported.
  • City council members in a Denver suburb voted to approve a name change for a neighborhood that has been called Swastika Acres, KDVR reported. >> Read more trending news  Cherry Hills Village City Council members Tuesday voted unanimously to change the subdivision name to Old Cherry Hills, the television station reported. Swastika Acres was named decades before the symbol was adopted by the Nazis, KDVR reported. However, the subdivision’s name is only apparent in real estate closing documents, according to the television station. “Some buyers are savvy enough to read the documents and really dig in and understand what their legal description of their property is,” Cherry Hills Village councilman Dan Sheldon told KDVR. “That’s the only way you’d know.” According to Sheldon, the subdivision name derived from the Denver Land Swastika Company, which divided the land into plots at the turn of the 20th century. “There was nothing wrong with (the name) at that time,” Sheldon told KDVR.