In the real world, in fact, many of their cuts cut nothing at all. The Transportation Department got credit for cutting a $280 million tunnel that had been canceled six months earlier. It also cut a $375,000 road project that had been created by a legislative typo, on a road that did not exist....
Warren Meyer, Congressional Ethics, February 10, 2013.
I believe they are also considering ending the Iraq and Afganistan wars as cuts even though the endings were already done.
Sadly, that's true. That has been government accounting for decades. Another example is this: Suppose the govt. planned to spend $100 billion on a new weapons system but, in the end, only spent $75 billion? They will tell the taxpayers that they cut spending by 25%!