RUSH: Hi, folks. And hang on here just a second. I need to ask the Official Program Observer a question. Are you upset at the two-year budget deal that was struck between president – (interruption) You’re not? You’re not upset about it? Well, it wasn’t long ago you’d have been steaming, you’d have been smoking over it. One of the biggest budget hawks at the EIB Network. “Nah, I’m not bothered.” This is a fascinating case study, in fact. We’re gonna address it.
RUSH: Mr. Program Observer, can I interrupt for one moment? When…? And I’m serious. This not a trick question. I’m not looking for any specific answer. I’m looking for what your memory is. When is the last time that you recall anybody…? Conservative, Republican, think tank, when is the last time anybody has really, really, really been upset over government spending? When’s the last time you can remember it? (interruption) “Before the Bush years.” (interruption)
The last time I remember was Obama. When Obama comes up with the Porkulus bill is when people went nuts. But I think… You know what people went nuts about was Obama’s lying and misrepresentation about it. He called it a “stimulus.” There was no way it could be a stimulus because he was gonna take money… I mean, the government doesn’t even have a pile of money that’s not being used, folks. There’s no way to stimulate the economy the way Obama tried to tell people he was doing.
In order for Obama to get $800 billion for his stimulus, he had to take it first, or print it. He had to take it from elsewhere in the economy, either in taxes — which he raised — and then had all kinds of new spending for Obamacare. And it was that which led to the creation of the Tea Party, and the Tea Party, which… You know, I was reading about this over the weekend. The Tea Party is still being sullied and impugned and maligned, exactly along the lines of what I said yesterday.
The Tea Party — which was average, ordinary Americans who’d never been in politics before; they had never been activists. This was the beauty of it. This was the power of it. They were not professional political people or employees. They were just outraged over Obama. They were outraged over this wanton spending with seemingly no concern and no even imaginary limitations and what that might mean for their children and their grandchildren. The Tea Party’s being portrayed as the Alt-Right, white nationalist, racist movement even now.
RUSH: Okay. So follow along here. Tea Party gets started, Tea Party takes over, Tea Party secures the Republican control of the House of Representatives in 2010, a 50 vote margin. It was overwhelming. The Democrats and media even began targeting the Tea Party as a bunch of racist, sexist, bigots, which is the default.
And even reading about the Tea Party over the weekend they’re now being tied to the Alt-Right and the white nationalists, white supremacists, which are such a tiny, tiny, tiny minority of the so-called Republican coalition. But they’re being positioned as the mainstream, while at the same time the left-wing extremists are being ignored and tamped down and Pelosi and Schumer are being built up as the moderate, normal, standard Democrat issue.
None of this is correct, which I addressed yesterday. But let’s go back. The Tea Party comes into being for a lot of reasons, but spending was one of the things that woke ’em all up. Now, these are people that had never been in organized politics before. They had voted, but they had not donated to anything. They’d maybe go to town halls once in a while. But these were the essence of citizen involvement in government.
They were not being paid. They were not on anybody’s donor list or any of that. And that’s what gave them power. There was no leader. There was no Tea Party leader. There was no figurehead responsible for it. It was an effervescent, natural eruption of conservative citizens of all ages, religions, creeds, sexes, orientations, you name it.
It scared the hell out of Washington, D.C., long before Donald Trump came along and scared the hell out of Washington, D.C., precisely because it couldn’t be controlled. You couldn’t demonize the Tea Party by taking out one person, the leader. Remember the Democrats had a march — and I’m getting to the budget aspect of this in just a second. The Democrats had a march for some legislation in Washington. They marched in unison, Nancy Pelosi, and they put the Congressional Black Caucasians in the front of the lines.
I think they were marching over to the House to have a vote on something. You got John Lewis in there and as many Democrats that had ties back to Martin Luther King. When the march was over, the members of the Congressional Black Caucasians said that the crowd had spat on them. There was no evidence for it. The entire thing had been videotaped, nobody spit on anybody.
But the Congressional Black Caucasians and Pelosi did a press conference ringing their hands worried so much about the impending racism of the Tea Party because they showed up to disrespect the civil rights coalition of the Democrat Party, led by John Louis. And he personally said that he had been spit on after being beat upside the head or some such thing, and it didn’t happen.
So the demonization of the Tea Party began almost immediately after their discovery. Washington and even some in the Republican Party were scared to death of them precisely because they couldn’t be controlled, because there was no leader. There then became a lot of groups that came along and tried to commandeer the identity of leader. How many PACs were created with Tea Party in the name? So many people wanted to get in front of it and make themselves look like they were the intellectual energy behind the Tea Party. There wasn’t.
It was just a mass movement at the same time by average, ordinary Americans. And it was spending that was Obama’s stimulus and then health care that scared the hell out of ’em. Well, eventually the Republicans listened, and the Republicans started attacking Obama on the spending, and the Republicans started attacking the Democrats in general. And the budget deal after budget — we had reconciliation. We didn’t have budgets. We didn’t do budgets. The Democrats found a way out of having to do budgets.
There were no debates. People got even more infuriated. So the Republicans listening to the Tea Party, realizing what a voting bloc it was, actually began talking spending discipline. And what happened? During all of that, remember the time the Republicans offered a plan to address the deficit after Obama’s stimulus and after Obama’s Obamacare? What did Democrats do? The Democrats prepared an ad showing Paul Ryan pushing a grandmother in a wheelchair over the cliff.
We all got outraged by it. Some people laughed at it. Some Republicans, “Come on, Rush, nobody’s gonna take that seriously.” I’ve been hearing this my entire career. “Come on, Rush, nobody’s gonna take what the Democrats do seriously, nobody’s gonna fall for that.” And yet here we are. A lot of people have fallen for a lot of Democrat crap over the last 50 years. And here we are.
And after the Paul Ryan wheelchair ad, then we had all kinds of similar kind of ads. Republicans were gonna starve the kids. Republicans were going to foul the water. Whatever the spending cuts, Republicans were gonna take Social Security away from people. Republicans were going to deny old people their housing allowances. This is what happened.
So the Republicans quickly — they didn’t know how to win this. I mean, the media, which is the Democrat Party, running all these free ads showing Paul Ryan pushing a grandmother in a wheelchair over a cliff. So now here we are, and that’s just one example. If you think back, I’m sure you can remember all of the examples, all of the outrageous ads the Democrats created, all of the lies that were told about Republican-proposed spending cuts, about Republican spending discipline.
And the Republicans had no idea how to fight back. They had no idea how to overcome it. And so the idea of spending discipline, getting rid of the deficit as far as average Americans who watch the Drive-By Media are concerned, became the same as taking health care away from grandma and basically killing her, taking food away from kids and basically letting them starve.
So now let’s fast-forward to the present. We are a year and a half away from a presidential election, and it’s time to do a budget. And the Trump White House decides: We we don’t want any of this crap that the Democrats do happening during a presidential reelection year. We don’t want any commercials of Trump throwing grandma over the cliff. We don’t want to deal with any of this crap right now. We’ve got enough on our plates. We’re not gonna balance the budget in a year and a half anyway. We’re not gonna get rid of the national debt. We’re not gonna get rid of the deficit in a year and a half. We know how the Democrats act. We know how the media’s gonna amplify and assist the Democrats.
At the same time, how do you talk about balancing the budget, how do you talk about the deficit when your opposition is promising to give everything away to everybody, including free health care for illegal immigrants? How do you talk about spending discipline and the deficit with a media famous for destroying economies and jobs, favoring policies which destroy economies and jobs?
And when you keep in mind that this is the Democrat agenda, the Democrat agenda requires as many people in need as they can create. The Democrat agenda requires poverty. The Democrat agenda requires people unable to cope with day-to-day life. The Democrat Party requires more and more people living in economic despair. That circumstance allows the Democrats to blame the Republicans for it and then propose even more programs and even a more benevolent, gigantic government to take care of all the people the Republicans don’t care about.
When the American people want to rein in spending, they will elect Republicans in landslides for decades. Democrats won’t even work with Trump on closing the border! What was Trump supposed to do? I’m playing devil’s advocate. Is Trump supposed to go to the mat on spending, a year and a half away from the election? Is he supposed to go to the mat? Is he supposed to enforce this and bring the Democrats along and try to negotiate with Pelosi on reducing spending, on getting rid of some entitlements, whatever it would take?
And you can’t balance a budget or make serious inroads in bringing down the national debt without doing something about entitlements, which means going after Social Security and going after Medicare and going after all these wonderful entitlement programs. The Democrats are just begging, they’re just lying in wait for the Republicans to do this.
The Democrats will notice work with Trump on closing the border. Obama doubled the national debt. The Democrats cheered. They didn’t care one whit about it. Ryan talked about the Democrats ran ads implying he wanted to murder grandmothers.
So I think a political calculation was made to not give the Democrats and the media such a gigantic, easy-to-hit target, particularly when there still isn’t any know-how or effort or seemingly any effort among a majority of Republicans to know how or even to try to push back against it.
Now, I understand that many people are upset about making this deal with Pelosi, adding $320 billion of spending. The deal is $320 billion. “White House and congressional negotiators reached accord on a two-year budget on Monday that would raise spending by $320 billion over existing caps and allow the government to keep borrowing, most likely averting a fiscal crisis but splashing still more red ink on an already surging deficit.”
Now, this is a New York Times story. All of a sudden the New York Times is concerned about this ’cause they think they can lay it off on Trump. Trump just made a deal with the Democrats, but you would never know that the Democrats have anything to do with this if you read the New York Times. This is all Trump.
So no matter which way the Republicans go, the media’s gonna trash them as either irresponsible spenders creating red ink or people killing grandmothers and starving kids! And you don’t want that going into an election year. What this is, this is a classic, textbook example of how Washington works.
Buried in the eighth paragraph is this little detail: “The agreement would raise spending by about $320 billion, compared with the strict spending levels established in the Budget Control Act of 2011 and set to go into effect next year without legislative action.”
In other words, eight years ago, eight years ago was when? 2011. Right after the Tea Party erupts, right after the 2010 midterms where the Democrats got shellacked and lost control of the House. Eight years ago Congress voted to limit spending beginning in 2020. But as usual, Congress has since changed its mind and they’re gonna allow a mere $320 billion more in spending over the previous 2011 agreement. And that’s what essentially Trump agreed to.
Now we’ve got stories out there, conservatives livid over spending increase, conservatives angry at Trump for this, and then there are conservatives who are being blamed for not forcing the issue, not remaining vigilant as conservatives against the spending. Nobody’s been vigilant about it.
I’ve concluded that this spending issue — well, I don’t have time to get into it fully here, but I’ve been hearing my whole life how it’s gonna wreck us and how it’s gonna destroy us, the national debt, the deficit’s gonna ruin us, and so far none of that’s happened. At some point it’s got to, but it hasn’t happened when the experts have told us it’s going to.
Anyway, do you want to see more ads of Trump pushing Granny over the cliff? Well, I mean, you know what the Democrats would do with this.
RUSH: We’re gonna start in Roanoke, Virginia. This is Al. Welcome, sir! It’s great to have you with us. Hi.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. How are you doing? Great to be on. I gotta tell you right from the start — just to give you a couple things — I was a former elected official, local level, in Roanoke, and I was a financial hawk. I mean, we were not gonna go into deficits. I always voted against the budget. I always asked that we do not spend more than we have. Your comments right now kind of upset me because that is the role of the Republican Party and of Trump.
His role is not to be scared about what they’re gonna say about him, and he has shown that he doesn’t really mind what people say about him. So all the ads of pushing grandmother over the thing? That should not bother Republicans, and it should definitely not bother Trump. That’s his role! We appreciate the guts he has. But on this, I think the thing is Republicans like spending money. I don’t think they’re scared about ads. I think they want to spend money, and I think they —
RUSH: Oh, no. Wait, wait. Now, you may right…
RUSH: Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. You may be right that they like spending money, but do not doubt me: They are scared to death of the ads and the media. That’s —
CALLER: Rush, I disagree. I disagree.
RUSH: Well, you can disagree all you want, but they are.
RUSH: There isn’t a Republican who wants to be the Paul Ryan-and-the-granny-over-the-cliff ad that comes next.
CALLER: Rush, you’re putting too much emphasis on that. I was in a local county supervisor; we had five Republicans. They want to spend money. They like spending money, and (crosstalk) —
RUSH: I’m not disagreeing with you about that!
CALLER: But that’s the bigger point. The lesser point is the ads. They want to spend money because they want to get reelected, and we have to stop that. But I think giving them cover, and I think… My thing is, I think you kind of give ’em a little cover by saying, you know, they’re worried about the ads and stuff. I don’t think we should give them cover. It’s not time. The time is now. We keep going into this debt issue; we cover the Republicans by saying, “Oh, they don’t want to be…” (crosstalk)
RUSH: Wait a minute. Why haven’t you been concerned about all of Trump’s spending for the last 2-1/2 years?
CALLER: I have! I have!
RUSH: Why haven’t I heard from you before today?
CALLER: Believe me, I have. I just can’t get into your show every day. But I’m totally upset about it. The Republicans do this all the time. They need to start voting against the budgets all the time. They need to make a big deal of it, and they don’t — and, Trump, he loves spending money. Now, I love a lot of the other things that Trump does —
RUSH: Okay, look, I don’t mean to be rude, but I really have no time. This is one of these breaks that doesn’t flow here. Thank you, Al!
RUSH: Yes, my friends. I know that I’m gonna get shellacked. Of course, I know this. I’m gonna get beat upside the head. But it is what it is. Have at it if you wish.
RUSH: Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. I know I’m gonna get ripped to shreds. I’m not trying to get ripped to shreds. I’m just trying to, you know, inject, infuse, shoot up some common sense into this. Let me ask you this. (interruption) What do you mean, “yes, sir,”? What’s going on in there? What is the matter? What’s the matter in there?
Snerdley, I know they’re unhappy with my position. I’m just trying to explain the reality of things. Let me ask you this question. So you’re getting a lot of calls from people angry at me. All right. Correct me, I’m just asking, open the question. Was Trump elected as a budget hawk? I’m just asking. Did anybody remember in the campaign Trump promising to balance the budget, get federal spending down to get rid of the deficit?
Does anybody remember Trump articulating conservative principles in theory on spending at any point in the campaign? Who did? Who did? Who was? And what happened to ’em? Okay. I’m just asking. So Snerdley says that you all are loaded for bear out there for me. I knew I was gonna be running the risk by mentioning the Paul Ryan granny commercial.
You know, you can’t win here. If I come out here and say the Republicans ought not care about the media, screw the media, you gotta do what’s right, you’re gonna go out there and you’re gotta cut the budget, you gotta go out there and you gotta slash the deficit.
And then when the commercials start the same people call me, “Why don’t the Republicans tell the media to go to hell? Why don’t the Republicans tell the media to stop it? Why don’t the Republicans respond to the Democrats? Why don’t you make the media stop it?” You want me to make the media stop what they’re doing?
RUSH: Here’s Joseph in Marietta, Ohio. Great to have you on the program, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Yeah, Rush. Thanks for taking my call and everything, but I gotta say that I’m very disappointed with you about the whole thing with the budget, because I think what the RNC should be doing if they had any cojones and if they had an actual backbone… If they really cared, they would be running advertisements about the Democrats starring Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Elizabeth Warren, and, you know, the whole Maoist and Stalinist crowd of the Democrat Party. They would have them throwing babies and children off the Golden Gate Bridge to symbolize what they’re doing with our national debt and our deficits.
RUSH: Well, it’s kind of a two-way street, though. I mean, the Republicans —
RUSH: The Republicans have agreed with every Democrat continuing resolution. That’s one of the reasons that we all got ticked off. There wasn’t even any budgeting. It was all a new continuing resolution every two to three months, you remember? They would tell us at the end, “We’ll get ’em next time! We can’t do it now because it’s a holiday. We can’t do it now because it’s the military portion of the budget. Well, we can’t do it now because this or that. But we’ll get ’em the next time! We’ll kick the can down the road and we’ll get ’em the next time,” and they never got ’em the next time. The Republicans are complicit in this.
CALLER: Yeah, and my whole —
RUSH: And the RNC right now is Donald Trump. The president of the United States runs the party of which he’s a member. The RNC is Trump. It’s his people over there. So when you say you wish the RNC was running ads of Democrats throwing kids off the Golden Gate Bridge, what you’re saying is you wish Trump would start doing that. We don’t even need to do that. We just need to run ads showing what they’re doing with abortion. But you want to focus on spending.
CALLER: Well, that’s what I’m saying. That would kill two birds with one stone. Roll a little thing with abortion in there. But my whole thing, too, is that I’m worried because I see history repeating itself like 2017 to 2008, when George Bush he signed every filthy spending bill that the Democrats sent up to him. And the media, they exonerated the Democrats, and actually got us Barack Obama who voted for those exact same bills when he was in the Senate!
RUSH: Yeah and, except for the war, voted for all the stuff that Bush wanted. What was Bush doing with all that, do you think?
CALLER: Well, it wasn’t just the war. I mean, the Dems had all their pork barrel spending —
RUSH: No. But the spending bills that you’re upset about that came out of the Bush years, what was he doing? Why was he doing it, do you think?
CALLER: Well, there was the war —
RUSH: Why hasn’t there been any fiscal responsibility in Washington since you and I have been alive, other than the early nineties when the Republicans won the House in 1994? They balanced the budget three years later, and then even that blew up.
CALLER: I know.
RUSH: They retired and went their separate ways and the whole thing blew up. The ’95 budget deal when Republicans began to starve children is when this whole thing went south.
CALLER: Oh, oh, I know. It’s funny how the mainstream media always blow smoke up the rear of Bill Clinton, how he balanced the budget. I always tell my liberal friends, “You can thank Newt Gingrich and Bill Frist.”
RUSH: Well, see? You’re kind of making my point here by going back all of this time, remembering all of the failures, all the media.
RUSH: All right. Now, one thing — although this is gonna be in the weeds, and you critics out there are gonna accuse me of trying to confuse and muddy the water. Here’s the spending cap deal that this budget agreement that Trump and Pelosi supposedly made. The thing about the budget cap deal, it prevents — this is a deal that goes back to 2011. This is eight years ago. This is after the Tea Party is formed, comes into existence. This is after the Republicans have swamped the Democrats in the 2010 midterms.
Remember, the Republicans took back control of the House. And it was largely due to Obamacare and the stimulus and people were fed up with this blatant — I mean, Obama was making no bones about his mission. He was gonna grow spending. He was gonna grow the government. And that was gonna be the key to everything.
If you remember back then, the Democrat theory of Keynesian economics was, government spending, government spending, government spending. That’s how you came out of a recession. That’s how you built the economy. Government spending, government spending, government spending. We were all throwing our hands up in frustration. No, it is not. It is not how you grow the economy. Making the government a bigger percentage of GDP is not how you grow the economy. It’s how you grow government. And Obama was making no bones about his intention!
Here comes the Tea Party demanding Republican fiscal responsibility. They tried, they started providing more than lip service on balancing the budget. That’s when the ads started coming with Paul Ryan sending grandma over the cliff in a wheelchair. And that was just one of them. The Republican Party thinks they got destroyed in the arena of public opinion with the media distorting their efforts, just like happened in 1995. They think they got destroyed over the starving kids school lunch cuts that weren’t. There were no cuts in the school lunch program. There were simply reductions in the rate of growth.
We’ve been through all this so many times. And I’ve asked people every year on this program, ’cause every year up until Trump, one Democrat media criticism has been absent in the two and a half years of Trump. Now, seriously. I mean, there may be isolated exceptions to this example. But in these two and a half years of Trump we have not heard a constant refrain of how Republicans hate people via budget cuts. We have not heard how Republicans want to starve, how Republicans want to kick seasoned citizens out of their homes. We haven’t heard any of this.
We haven’t heard what was a 50-year refrain. Every time a spending debate came up, it was textbook what was going to happen. Republicans are gonna kick seniors out of their homes. They were gonna deny people Social Security. They were going to starve children. They were gonna stop paying attention to the environment, you name it.
Now, those criticisms, those false allegations have been replaced by new ones: Trump hates kids, separates families, cages them. But it’s baseless. Just as the budget criticisms were baseless. But in these two and a half years the Republicans have not been criticized for the same things that every other Republican has been criticized for for 50 years.
The Democrats and the media have shifted and now Trump is a full-fledged racist, bigot, a white nationalist or what have you, but there isn’t any serious accusation that Trump wants to kill people with the budget and with spending cuts.
So this spending cap deal prevents spending limits that Congress voted on in 2011 from being automatically implemented next year, next year being 2020. They did a deal in 2011, a spending cap deal preventing spending limits that they voted on in 2011 from being automatically implemented next year. This deal was buried in the eighth paragraph of a Washington Post story today.
Quote, “The agreement” — I shared this with you in the first hour — “The agreement would raise spending by about $320 billion, compared with the strict spending levels established in the Budget Control Act of 2011 and set to go into effect next year without legislative action.”
This was the deal that was struck after the stimulus, after the Republicans took control of the House. They came up with a budget deal that dictated spending all the way through 2020. And it limited the amount of spending. And Obama went along with it because he knew that there would be any number of opportunities to break it, what with the continuing resolution technique and all that. But the total that we’re talking about here is $320 billion.
In other words, eight years ago Congress voted to limit spending in 2020. They kicked the can down the road. In 2011, Congress, with the agreement of the Obama White House, agreed to budget responsibility eight years. That’s after Obama’s out of office, long after he’s out of office. I don’t know if you’ll remember this, but at the time we were livid because this gave Obama a pass. The spending limits would occur after he leaves office in 2020.
So what’s happened is those limits were blown up in the new deal. And so now $320 billion can be spent, because Congress changed its mind, and they’re going to allow $320 billion more in spending over the previous 2011 agreement. Now, the next thing I’m gonna say is not gonna sit well with most of you, but it needs to be mentioned. Three-hundred-and-twenty billion is not, in comparison to the national budget every year — it used to be what the deficit was.
Back in the eighties, $320 billion was the deficit. The whole budget now is four to five trillion. This is chump change, the amount of new spending that’s been agreed to is chump change. It’s not a new trillion. It’s not even a new half trillion. I don’t expect to be understood on this. I expect, Mr. Snerdley, you’re gonna get a new round of phone calls from people. But I’m trying to put all this in perspective, because this all centers on something that happened in 2011.
After the Republicans took control of the House, they got Obama to agree to spending cuts starting in 2020. The deal that was made yesterday eliminates that and substitutes $320 billion in new spending, not trillions, $320 billion over the previous 2011 agreement. And the Democrats complained that Obama didn’t spend enough. They wanted five or 10 times more that. These people were out there advocating — if you’ll remember when the Obama economy was languishing at 1% GDP growth every year, all of these favored leftist economists led by Paul Krugman were all claiming that Obama wasn’t spending anywhere near — the stimulus wasn’t enough, it needed to be three times that big to make any difference.
Now, let me give you an alternative way of looking at this. If you don’t like my — what would I call it? My positioning of the — if the Republicans went to the mat on spending with a year and a half out of the presidential race and I asked you to remember the Paul Ryan pushing his grandma over the cliff ad, do you want that kind of stuff in the presidential campaign, obviously Trump doesn’t, Republicans don’t.
But here’s an alternative way of explaining what happened. I could have done it this way. I’ll try it this way. We’ll see how this registers. Trump announced that his administration and congressional leadership consisting of McConnell, Schumer, Pelosi, and McCarthy reached a budget and debt ceiling deal with no poison pills through July 2021 amounting to approximately $2.7 trillion. The president said the deal was a real compromise in order to give another big victory to the military and our great veterans.
The agreement includes $738 billion for defense spending next year, followed by $740 billion in defense spending in 2021, nondefense spending was set at $632 billion in 2020 and $634.5 billion in 2021. Trump and the GOP stood their ground. Now we have a deal that benefits the country, benefits the media, prevents a bunch of wasteful shutdowns and keeps us secure. If you are a Trump supporter, this is how you would look at this budget deal.
If you’re not a Trump supporter or if you’re not fully aware of what’s happening, you can look at the way the media is reporting this and think that Trump has totally caved for whatever reasons on this. Now, Trump has also said — and I know many of you probably got a laugh out of it — but Trump has also said that in his next term we’re gonna get serious about spending reductions. I know. Every politician in the world has made a similar commitment and promise.
So you have a number of different ways you can look at this. You can look at this as a really good deal for the U.S. military, for an end to shutdowns, for an end to all of the continuing resolutions that hamstrung the country every three to six months, and it happened with a year and a half to go in the presidential campaign so it cannot become a legitimate campaign issue.
If you want to find good news in it, you can. And that’s what this is, a full service program providing you any number of ways of looking at the same story and helping you fight against and remember how the fake news tries to position everything to lure you into thinking Trump is caving and abandoning you when that is not what happened here.
RUSH: I want to reiterate one thing on the budget deal before I move on here to Mueller. And it’s a very important thing, this deal, there cannot be… well, anything can be broken, as you know. But this eliminates any potential government shutdowns over the next year and a half, two years.