STAFF BLOG CAPITOL CHATTER A look at federal debt
By Don Davis
The federal debt has built up over the years because Congress and presidents of both parties tend to spend more money than the government raises in taxes and other revenues.
C... Posted on 10/16/13 at 7:59 AM
THE NEW FORTY "What the hell Bobby!!"
When someone says or does something stupid, crazy or nonsensical my nephew Nick has been known to say, "What the hell Bobby!!" If you are a King of the Hill fan you likely recognize this as a Hank Hil... Posted on 4/8/11 at 8:34 PM
Before the end of the year, Congress must agree on a plan to reduce the federal deficit or face drastic, automatic across-the-board cuts to almost all federal programs totaling more than $1 trillion over the next 10 years.
There's lingering resentment among tea party lawmakers that the bold but contentious blueprint doesn't go far enough, even though it calls for cutting $5.3 trillion from President Barack Obama's budget over the coming decade, including sweeping cuts to federal health care programs and social programs aimed at the poor.
House Republicans unveil budget plan to overhaul Medicare, slash spending; fix would not be quick House Republicans unveiled a campaign-ready budget that would slash federal spending, lower tax rates and overhaul Medicare — a do-over, of sorts, of its blueprint last year that got the party into political trouble.
Democrats and the White House are crying foul, and many GOP veterans warn it will produce gridlock later, when the House turns to spending bills setting agency budgets for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1.
Massive tax cuts proposed by GOP presidential candidates Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum would cause the national debt to explode while Mitt Romney's budget plan could generate red ink in line with current projections, according to a new study released Thursday by the Committee for a Responsible Federal budget. Ron Paul, meanwhile, is the only candidate whose spending cuts exceed the amount of revenue lost by cutting taxes.
President Obama urged lawmakers to push forward on more measures, from assistance to struggling homeowners to increased taxes on the wealthy, saying the looming election was no excuse for inaction in Washington.
Americans are getting an election-year tax present. Congress voted with rare speed and cooperation Thursday to extend a Social Security payroll tax cut for 160 million workers and to renew unemployment benefits for millions more who haven't seen a paycheck in six months.
Millions of Americans will continue to receive long-term unemployment benefits under legislation approved Friday in Congress, but the scope of the program is being scaled back to cover fewer people by the end of the year.
The House kicked off debate today on extending a payroll tax cut for 160 million workers and jobless benefits for people out of work the longest, a showdown that many legislators hope will finally end a standoff that has dominated Washington since the fall.
Congressional negotiators have agreed on a $144 billion package that extends three major programs through the end of the year: a 2 percentage-point reduction in the Social Security payroll tax, federal unemployment benefits for the long-time unemployed and avoidance of a 27 percent cut in reimbursements for doctors treating Medicare patients.
VIDEO: Watch at bottom of article President Barack Obama unveiled a $3.8 trillion spending plan Monday that seeks to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade but does little to restrain growth in the government's huge health benefit programs, a major cause of future deficits.
The White House today confirmed a report that President Barack Obama's new budget predicts a $1.3 trillion deficit for the ongoing fiscal year. The deficit would drop to $901 billion next year under the administration's tax and spending policies.
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