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January 9, 2013
Why can't Senator Reid be forced to submit a budget?
It's the law of the land that the Senate must submit a budget by April 15, but the last time Harry Reid was in compliance was 2009. Why isn't Reid being punished for being a budget scofflaw? Byron York: The answer is the law requiring Congress to pass an annual budget, the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, doesn't have an enforcement mechanism. Lawmakers are required by law to pass a budget each year by April 15, but there's no provision to punish them, or even slightly inconvenience them, if they don't. In Reid's case, the Senate last passed a budget in April 2009, 1,351 days ago as of Wednesday. "The law doesn't have teeth," says a Senate aide involved in the fight. "Sen. Sessions and others have proposed process reforms to give the budget law teeth (one reform would make it harder to pass spending bills without a budget), but the debt ceiling is the strongest leverage we have on this. This is the opportunity." In other words, it is precisely...(Read Full Post)