For more than a decade control of public sector growth has been one of the key issues in Danish politics. In an attempt to contain further uncontrolled growth, the whole budgetary system has been gradually reformed, and political cutting operations have been a recurrent event. Serious questions, however, remain. First, it is questionable whether procedural and institutional reforms of the budgetary system have made it any easier for political decision-makers to carry through their cutting plans. Second, it is doubtful whether the policy-makers are able to keep within the financial limits, set up by themselves, when confronted with demands for solution of unforeseen, but politically pressing, problems. In such situations there will always remain a strong politicalpropensity to make an exception.