Budgeting is not easy. While some Republicans claim budget cuts are a way to boost short-term growth, the data (see p. 5) suggest that spending cuts are no more stimulative than spending increases (which is to say they aren’t stimulative). But that isn’t why budgets need to be reined-in. They need to be reined-in because it is mathematically impossible for state budgets to continue to grow faster than the private sector on which they depend. And if they aren’t reined-in, future cuts will be far larger and far more painful than those being proposed today.