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Old 07-10-2011, 09:22 AM  
mlyonsd mlyonsd is offline
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Boehner lowers debt-package goal

WASHINGTON — House Republican budget negotiators have abandoned plans to pursue a massive $4 trillion, 10-year deficit reduction package in the face of stiff Republican opposition to any plan that would increase taxes as part of the deal.

House Speaker John Boehner informed President Barack Obama on Saturday that a smaller agreement of about $2 trillion was more realistic.

In a statement issued Saturday evening, Boehner said: “Despite good-faith efforts to find common ground, the White House will not pursue a bigger debt reduction agreement without tax hikes.”

Boehner’s statement came a day before he and seven of the top House and Senate leaders were scheduled to meet at the White House in a negotiating session and lay out their remaining differences.

The White House responded that Obama will continue to push to make as much progress on deficit reduction as possible.

A deficit reduction deal is crucial to win Republican support for an increase in the nation’s debt ceiling. The government’s borrowing capacity is currently capped at $14.3 trillion and administration officials say it will go into default without action by Aug. 2.

Both parties are under pressure from voters to resolve the debt crisis ahead of next year’s congressional and presidential elections. Obama is seen as a candidate that is tough to beat, though voters’ fears over the economy have been dragging down his numbers.

Obama tried to build political support for an ambitious package of spending cuts and new tax revenue that would reduce the debt by $4 trillion over 10 years. But from the moment he proposed it, Republicans said they would reject any tax increases and Democrats objected to spending cuts in some of their most prized benefit programs, including Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers led by Vice President Joe Biden had already identified, but not signed off on, about $2 trillion in deficit reductions, most accomplished through spending cuts.

But after holding a secret meeting with Boehner last weekend, Obama and his top aides said they believed an even bigger figure was attainable if both parties made politically painful, but potentially historic, choices.
In the end, the pressure from both sides was pushing against Obama’s bigger goal.

“I believe the best approach may be to focus on producing a smaller measure, based on the cuts identified in the Biden-led negotiations, that still meets our call for spending reforms and cuts greater than the amount of any debt limit increase,” Boehner said.

The White House did not have an immediate reaction.

A Republican official familiar with the discussions said taxes and the major health and retirement entitlement programs continued to be sticking points.

Earlier on Saturday, in his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama appealed to Democrats and Republicans to “make some political sacrifices” and take advantage of an extraordinary opportunity to tackle the government’s budget crisis.

He said that it will take a “balanced approach” that mixes limits on domestic programs and the Pentagon, curbs to Medicare and elimination of some tax breaks for the wealthy.

AP
http://www.suntimes.com/news/nation/...kage-goal.html
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Old 07-10-2011, 09:25 AM   #2
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Fine. Just don't raise taxes. You raise taxes and you kneecap an economy already leaning against a wall just to stand up AND you guarantee Nancy Pelosi getting her gavel back in 2012.

4 trillion or 2 trillion it's all a dog and pony show. Whats the projected national debt by 2014 when obamacare goes into full effect?
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Old 07-10-2011, 09:52 AM   #3
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I thought Boehner sold out with a compromise that does raise taxes.
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Old 07-10-2011, 12:47 PM   #4
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I'm a moderate Republican, but there has to be shared pain, here. Why would Obama give up something (SS and Medicare reform) for nothing?

It's not a one way street. It's not going to take radical surgery to attain the 4-5 trillion they are looking for. Some rational, moderate, mild reforms are absolutely reasonable. For the Democrats, simply slowing the rate of inflation in these programs by tying it to GDP growth alone would reap huge deficit reduction benefits. Also, they should be prepeared to slightly raise the eligibility ages to ease the pressure as well. These are not massive requests. For the Republicans, there must be some tax increases. Perhaps a slight increase in the amount of money the social security tax applies to (I think its around 106k now, maybe like 110k) and the adoption of the Bowles-Simpson plan which would actually reduce tax rates (making it more palatable) but close alot of loopholes which makes it a revenue-gainer on the whole. I would also be strongly in favor of axing the Bush tax cuts, which would reap us huge savings as well, or at least the portion for the 250k plus. Common sense compromises on estate taxes (3.5m instead of 5m exemption) would be fine, as well.

There has to be shared pain or else nothing will get done. Some tax increases might be harmful to the economy (and some spending cuts will be as well), but that's ok, the most important thing here is to get the long term debt under control. That's far more important than the short term.
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Old 07-10-2011, 12:49 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by SoCalBronco View Post
There has to be shared pain or else nothing will get done. Some tax increases might be harmful to the economy (and some spending cuts will be as well), but that's ok, the most important thing here is to get the long term debt under control. That's far more important than the short term.
I'd like to know how spending cuts hurt an economy unless you mean a mercantilist, socialist or mixed-economy.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:00 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
I thought Boehner sold out with a compromise that does raise taxes.
It must be those impecable sources of yours again.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:03 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by SoCalBronco View Post
I'm a moderate Republican, but there has to be shared pain, here. Why would Obama give up something (SS and Medicare reform) for nothing?
You think that only Democrats are going to feel the pain of cutting spending?
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:06 PM   #8
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It must be those impecable sources of yours again.
oh, c'mon...

you just got here and you're making me laugh out loud, literally (my wife said wtf is so damned funny?)...
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:10 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
You think that only Democrats are going to feel the pain of cutting spending?
that's very true...

lots of republicans are out of work too...
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:11 PM   #10
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I'd like to know how spending cuts hurt an economy unless you mean a mercantilist, socialist or mixed-economy.
Suppose the government stopped spending entirely tomorrow. Those individuals who were either earning a salary from government, or were parties to government procurement contracts, or were obtaining benefits by way of the government in some manner, would be seriously hampered in their ability to become buyers on their own of products, which would affect private sellers of goods and those sellers would be hampered in their own purchases etc. We don't have a booming private sector right now and consumers arent spending at levels we would need them to spend to be the primary engine of the economy (which is the ideal and preferred scenario), so at times, on a limited basis, the government does have to pick up the slack.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:13 PM   #11
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Thats a shame. Opportunities like these don't come around to often, I was hoping they would get something substantial done.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:17 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
It must be those impecable sources of yours again.
No it wasn't. This looks like newer information from earlier info since it said Saturday. I didn't keep up after that which is why I used the words " "I thought." Quit being a jerk.

My sources were impeccable on Iraq, Afganistan, blowback, and the economy being predicted to collapse—ya' know when you were arguing it was sound.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:18 PM   #13
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You think that only Democrats are going to feel the pain of cutting spending?
I think its unrealistic to expect Obama to agree to making serious reductions in his programs without getting something in exchange and I don't think some of the revenue generating proposals are all that onerous or unreasonable. Again, major sacrifices are not being asked here of either side, so its unfair to be asking only certain groups of constituences to essentially pay for the entire deficit reduction program. That's just not reasonable or feasible. The GOP has an oppurtunity to finally address the runaway problem of profilgate spending in these entitlement programs and they MUST be addressed. What the other side is asking for in exchange is not unreasonable. Cutting taxes overall but eliminating loopholes isn't particularly painful for the vast majority of people. A small uptick in the amount of income that SS taxes could apply to isn't particularly painful for the vast majority of people. I would be more than willing to give up a little bit there to rein in these behemoth entitlement programs. It's a worthwhile compromise and that's the name of hte game...compromise. We will NEVER get anywhere on our own. Ever. It's always a give and take process and you hope that in the end, you got a little more than the other side, did and I think that's true here.

The biggest obstacle to a truly historic deal that could really reshape our fiscal future is the extreme Tea Party wing of my party. They just don't understand how it works. Life isn't simplistic slogans like "no tax hikes ever". That's not an intelligent manner of going about things. That's not a way that involves real thought and contemplation. Everything depends on context, situation and fact intensive analysis of what would be reasonable and equitable.

They're like the donkey that denied that that Kevin Bacon was in footloose.

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Old 07-10-2011, 01:19 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by SoCalBronco View Post
I'm a moderate Republican, but there has to be shared pain, here. Why would Obama give up something (SS and Medicare reform) for nothing?

It's not a one way street. It's not going to take radical surgery to attain the 4-5 trillion they are looking for. Some rational, moderate, mild reforms are absolutely reasonable. For the Democrats, simply slowing the rate of inflation in these programs by tying it to GDP growth alone would reap huge deficit reduction benefits. Also, they should be prepeared to slightly raise the eligibility ages to ease the pressure as well. These are not massive requests. For the Republicans, there must be some tax increases. Perhaps a slight increase in the amount of money the social security tax applies to (I think its around 106k now, maybe like 110k) and the adoption of the Bowles-Simpson plan which would actually reduce tax rates (making it more palatable) but close alot of loopholes which makes it a revenue-gainer on the whole. I would also be strongly in favor of axing the Bush tax cuts, which would reap us huge savings as well, or at least the portion for the 250k plus. Common sense compromises on estate taxes (3.5m instead of 5m exemption) would be fine, as well.

There has to be shared pain or else nothing will get done. Some tax increases might be harmful to the economy (and some spending cuts will be as well), but that's ok, the most important thing here is to get the long term debt under control. That's far more important than the short term.
I can agree with most of your sentiment. A considerable deficit reduction is possible if both sides quit drawing unreasonable lines in the sand.
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Old 07-10-2011, 01:24 PM   #15
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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Suppose the government stopped spending entirely tomorrow.
Well, I didn't know anyone, let alone I, to say stop spending entirely. I said spending cuts.

Obama has funded a host of new initiatives and we bailed out Greece—or so I have read here.

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Those individuals who were either earning a salary from government, or were parties to government procurement contracts, or were obtaining benefits by way of the government in some manner, would be seriously hampered in their ability to become buyers on their own of products, which would affect private sellers of goods and those sellers would be hampered in their own purchases etc.
On the other hand, using your scenario of stopping "spending entirely" they'd need no revenue and the private sector would have a lot more money to spend. Spendings cuts keep money in the economy that taxes remove.

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We don't have a booming private sector right now and consumers arent spending at levels we would need them to spend to be the primary engine of the economy (which is the ideal and preferred scenario), so at times, on a limited basis, the government does have to pick up the slack.
Oh well I am not a Keynesian so I don't agree with this.
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