Isakson: Democrats failed to submit budget in past 1000 days

A favorite GOP talking point accusing Democrats of punting on the nation’s budget problems for the past 1,000 days has made its way to Georgia.

The GOP devoted an entire video ad to it. U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican from Wisconsin who has won kudos from some deficit hawks, is churning out essays and press releases on it.

And Georgia’s U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, a Republican, is putting his own spin on the subject.  

“I find it very troubling that the president is asking to increase the nation’s debt limit when his Democrat majority in the Senate has failed to submit [a] budget in the past 1,000 days,” Isakson said in a Jan. 26 press release.

That’s about three years.

We grabbed our calculator and got to work with the help of our sister sites PolitiFact Florida and PolitiFact Wisconsin, who have analyzed other claims on the same subject.

But before we proceed with our fact check, it helps to explain how Congress comes up with its federal budget.

This is how it works: Since the passage of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Senate and the House are supposed to pass budget resolutions in the spring. These budget resolutions set a framework for spending, taxation and other fiscal items in the coming fiscal year. They also lay out general plans for the next four years.

If these budget resolutions differ, the chambers are supposed to hammer out a compromise.

If a budget resolution doesn’t pass, the federal government won’t go dark.

Budget resolutions are distinct from appropriations bills, which actually allocate how the federal government spends its money.  If a resolution tanks, the majority party can use congressional procedures to move forward to consider appropriations bills.

As a previous PolitiFact National story said, “the inability to pass the budget framework can reflect poorly on the majority’s organizational skills and/or the degree of partisan discord in Congress. It also increases the likelihood of a logjam of appropriations bills in the fall and winter, and decreases the chance that controversial tax bills will pass the Senate.”

Now, on to our fact check. Thanks to PolitiFact Florida and PolitiFact Wisconsin, we

You can read the rest of this article at: http://www.politifact.com/georgia/statements/2012/mar/14/johnny-isakson/isakson-democrats-failed-submit-budget-1000-days/

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