Newt Gingrich's Numeracy Problem
By David Henderson
$1,400 * 200 million does not = $2,000.
Newt Gingrich tweets:
If Senate Republicans fail to bring up the $2000 payment as a clean vote they run a real risk of losing the two seats in Georgia. This is an 80% issue. People get it. Billions for the banks, billions for big companies, but we can’t find $2000 for everyday Americans.
If the proposal before the Senate really were to give $2,000 to everyday Americans, no one would be raising an objection because $2,000 divided by, say, 200 million everyday eligible Americans is way, way below 1 penny each.
But it’s an extra $1,400 per “everyday American.” (They will already get $600 and the new bill raises that number by $1,400 to $2,000.) With over 200 million Americans qualifying, that’s about $300 billion.
So if we were to rewrite Newt’s tweet honestly and accurately, it would read something like:
If Senate Republicans fail to bring up the $2,000 payment as a clean vote they run a real risk of losing the two seats in Georgia. This is an 80% issue. People get it. Billions for the banks, billions for big companies, but we can’t find $300 billion for everyday Americans.
Sounds a little different, doesn’t it?
Newt’s tweet also shows the difference between those of us who want to have gridlock and divided government in order to restrain government and people who want divided government simply because they want the Republicans to be the majority party in the Senate.
Many of us want gridlock because we fear what a Democratic House of Representatives, a Democratic Senate, and a Democratic president will do. One of the main things many of us fear is that they will spend hundreds of billions of dollars more than if the Republicans won the Senate and restrained the Democrats’ spending. But if Mitch McConnell caves so that the feds spend an extra $300 billion and the Republicans win in Georgia, they will have nullified a huge part of the reason for having the Republicans win in Georgia.
UPDATE: In an earlier version I claimed that the $2,000 would be on top of the $600 already approved. That was incorrect. See this WaPo article for the details.