JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - One local Tea Party member says the budget deal is bad all-around that doesn't focus enough on national debt reduction.
A main component highlighted by Congressman Paul Ryan and Senator Patty Murray is that the deal would reduce the national deficit by $23 billion.
“It’s a joke,” says Hank Madden, a certified financial planner. “It just simply doesn’t even compute. It doesn’t even equate as a round-off error when you look at a trillion-plus annual budget over ten years.”
Madden believes the sequestration cuts actually helped the economy, but the Obama Administration’s implementation hurt.
President Obama praised the budget deal for replacing parts of the sequester cuts, which he said "have harmed students, seniors, and middle-class families and served as a mindless drag on our economy over the last year."
Madden says the President’s appraisal “tells you how lopsided this deal is,” and it shows how “weak” the Republican leadership is “that they would acquiesce to this deal.”
“These deficits are out of control,” he says. “And not only do they hurt the business, they hurt the individual. Businesses hire people. Businesses make products. And when you start putting so much money into debt, it saps money out of the economy.”
When asked about one thing that would set this budget deal in the right direction, Madden quickly answered with cutting entitlements.
“American has got to take some tough measures,” he says. “If we don’t, this country is simply going to roll over and become another Grease.”
As for social security, he’s in favor of cutting back on disability benefits, which he says will go bankrupt by 2016. He’s also like to see a significant cut in the nation’s food stamps program.
“You have food stamps that have gone out of control. People have created dependency.”
Though Madden is a Tea Party member, he’s quick to lay blame on both parties.
“You’ve got a mindless group of people who are so focused on power, they cannot see the damage that’s being done to this country.”
You can hear Hank Madden host “Smart Money with Hank Madden” every Saturday on WOKV from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.