We've gone from $3 in spending cuts to $1 in additional revenue to this; one for one - a dollar raised and a dollar cut.
Considering the cliff deal cut one dollar for $41 dollars in revenue, maybe it's about time Republicans began to call the Democrats out on their pledge of "balanced" cuts and increased revenues.
Democrats say they want to raise as much as $1 trillion in new revenues through tax reform later this year to balance Republican demands to slash mandatory spending.
Democratic leaders have had little time to craft a new position for their party since passing a tax deal Tuesday that will raise $620 billion in revenue over the next ten years.
The emerging consensus, however, is that the next installment of deficit reduction should reach $2 trillion and about half of it should come from higher taxes.
This sets up tax reform as one of the biggest fights of the 113th Congress, which began on Thursday.
Republicans say tax reform should be revenue neutral. Additional revenues collected by eliminating or curbing tax breaks and deductions should be used to lower rates.
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has dismissed the possibility of negotiating additional tax increases.
"I'm in favor of doing tax reform but I think tax reform ought to be revenue neutral as it was back during the Reagan years. We've resolved this issue, look we don't have this problem because we tax too little. We have it because we spend way, way too much," McConnell said Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press."
Liberal and centrist Democrats say revenues collected through tax reform should go to deficit reduction.
"We've done about $2 trillion. I thought $4 trillion is the goal we should reach. I think we're about half way there. We need another $2 trillion," said Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction over tax reform.
He said the $917 billion cut under the Budget Control Act passed in the summer of 2011 combined with $620 billion in revenues from Tuesday's tax deal and interest savings adds up to about $2 trillion.
Note: Those "interest savings" arise from the fantastical notion that the amount we pay for servicing the debt will drop. And can I interest you in a bridge over the Chicago River?
They really are shameless. They just can't wait to get their hands on our money. It will hardly matter if tax reform is revenue neutral or not. The money will be spent regardless.
And good luck cutting anything from the budget once a deal is reached.