Archive for Saturday, November 19, 2011

Deficit gridlock looms, supercommittee deadlocked

November 19, 2011


— Deadline nearing, the deficit-reduction talks in Congress sank toward gridlock Friday after supercommittee Democrats rejected a late Republican offer that included next-to-nothing in new tax revenue. Each side maneuvered to blame the other for a looming stalemate.

The panel faces a deadline of next Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, and lawmakers on both sides stressed they were ready to meet through the weekend in a last-ditch search for compromise.

But there was little indication after a day of closed-door meetings that a breakthrough was likely, both Democrats and Republicans emphasizing long-held political positions.

“Where the divide is right now is over taxes, and whether the wealthiest Americans should share in the sacrifices,” said Washington Sen. Patty Murray, the Democratic co-chair of the panel.

But Michael Steel, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, said Republicans had offered “a balanced, bipartisan plan — the fact that it was rejected makes it clear that Washington Democrats won’t cut a dime in government spending without job-killing tax hikes.”

Republicans disclosed during the day they had outlined an offer on Thursday for about $543 billion in spending cuts — leaving Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security untouched — and $3 billion in higher tax revenue.

Most if not all of the recommended savings were items that Democrats have agreed to in earlier talks, but only, party officials said, on condition they part of a larger deal in which Republicans agreed to additional tax increases.

Democrats have long demanded that Republicans agree to significant amounts of higher taxes on the wealthy as part of any deal, and they quickly rejected the offer, according to officials in both parties.

It was unclear where the talks would turn next, but the GOP proposal suggested the discussions had effectively moved into a range of savings far below the $1.2 trillion the committee has been seeking.

It also appeared Republicans were jettisoning a plan for $300 billion in higher tax revenue, an offer that had exposed internal GOP divisions when it was presented two weeks ago. It also has failed to generate momentum for a compromise among Democrats.


Getaroom 6 years, 5 months ago

The Déjà vu is the obscene Corporate Capitalist cronyism at work through and through. The GOP contingent is still signed-on to NOT do anything to move the economy forward no matter what, simply because they want to defeat Obama and that is their ONLY objective.

Additionally, how can the voting public trust anything that legislators from either side do, considering they are all, at the very least, millionaires and immune from prosecution from Wall Street insider trading, which many of them participate in. But the silver lining is the automatic hatchet cuts take effect in 2013 anyway and we all win - right?

Of course we all win, Corporations are people too, making huge sacrifices and really suffering right along with we "the other" people. Just ask Romney, he has already validated that.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

I am sorry that I cannot cite a source for this at all, but I think I read about it in the not too distant past. Or maybe I just dreamed that I read about it. But I don't think there will be very many that will doubt the veracity of my very vague memories, dreams, fantasies, or where ever this totally crazy idea came from.

Someone did a study that concerned the personal finances of people that had served in the House of Representatives and the Senate. What was compared was how many terms they had served, their personal net worth before, and then after, their terms in office were complete.

As I vaguely recall the conclusions, after completing only a couple terms in the House of Representatives, apparently their net worth had inexplicably increased by at least a few hundred thousand dollars. Those who had served many terms had a personal net worth of at least a million dollars higher than when they were first elected, somehow.

And for those who had served in the Senate, the numbers were nowhere near that. Apparently, for those who had served in the Senate for many years, somehow their net worth had increased by something like ten million dollars.

But maybe I just dreamed that all up one night and then confused it with reality, I really don't know.

Maybe that would be a very good subject for someone to write a thesis on for a doctoral dissertation.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 5 months ago

Warren Buffett: The Super-Rich Have Been Coddled Long Enough By A Billionaire-Friendly Congress

Read more:

In an op-ed in the New York Times Monday, the Oracle of Omaha calls on Congress to ask him and other "super-rich" Americans to contribute more to the federal government.

Buffett called for the immediate increase in the tax rate for those making more than $1 million, and for a new, higher tax bracket for those making more than $10 million — including dividends and capital gains.

And to those who argue that higher rates hurt job creation, I would note that a net of nearly 40 million jobs were added between 1980 and 2000," he writes. "You know what’s happened since then: lower tax rates and far lower job creation."

Buffett also called on the so-called "Super Committee" of 12 members of congress tasked with $1.5 trillion in deficit cuts to exceed that, in order to restore the nation's confidence in Washington.

He said Congress seems bent on protecting him and other wealth Americans from taxes as if "we were spotted owls or some other endangered species," but added they can do their part.

My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress," he writes. "It’s time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice."

jayhawkinsf 6 years, 5 months ago

Gee, I'm shocked that the super-committee might be gridlocked. Given Congress' recent history, who would have seen that coming?

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