Medicare for All. The Green New Deal. Free college tuition.

With each new entrant into the Democratic presidential sweepstakes comes a fresh cascade of ambitious social programs to entice and excite would-be supporters.

The list of “payfors,” to use a bit of Washington jargon, grows more slowly. They’ll pay for this how, again? Tax the rich, tax the rich — or take cover behind a convenient bit of progressive dogma: Don’t worry about the fiscal impact because America’s rising budget deficits and debt levels don’t much matter.

That’s a scary drift of thought, and it should set off alarm bells for all Americans. Vast increases in debt will ultimately compromise Washington’s ability to maintain its current array of spending programs, let alone add new ones, and threaten our standard of living.

A short history: While Republicans once were the party of fiscal responsibility, President Ronald Reagan threw that out the window by embracing enormous tax cuts justified by a fiction: the idea that the resulting growth would more than pay for them.