Conrad: We need a short-term debt deal - Reid J. Epstein - POLITICO.com
this is a huge development, let me tell you why
conrad is the budget chair, he's the senate's paul ryan, he's the guy who hasn't been able to deliver a budget in going on three years
kent conrad of north dakota, who announced he's not gonna run again, a moderate, is the man more than any other who killed the public option
conrad at budget was the gatekeeper's right hand man in the crafting of obamacare, for example, the gatekeeper being max baucus at finance
conrad is the champion of what he calls rural care, he thinks medicare scheduling rips off country doctors and kills rural care, and it was on this plank that he opposed the po
conrad is also the FACE of the gang of 6
when the white house got kinda giddy over the gang two days ago, it was cuzza statements made by conrad about his group having found the answer
that development, by the way, was made possible by the return to the gang of doctor tom coburn from oklahoma, who says he went back to conrad's caucus cuzza the heavy enticement of huge health care cuts
the point is---conrad, gang of 6, is the white house's last best hope of getting a deal
the white house, all thru these epic debates, has had 3 priorities---raise the ceiling hi enough to get thru the presidential (which would require about 2.4T of credit), protect entitlements from cuts, raise revenues
the gop has had 2 demands---dollar for dollar (actually, that ratio has risen radically recently, ccb went from 2.4/2.4 to 5.8/2.4, mcconnell-reid went from recommended to mandated cuts, even conrad's gang of 6 has 3.75T which enticed doctor coburn) and no taxes
conrad's declaration this morning on msnbc's coffee joe indicates the white house has bowed to reality concerning its top priority
yesterday, the WHIP, dick durbin, the senior from obama's home state, said---gang of 6 would have to be written, scored, passed thru senate, then house, then conference...
no way in 12 days
bottom line---if this goes down as it appears it might, the white house will get about 6 months of credit
and WE CAN JUST CONTINUE THIS DEBATE IN SEPTEMBER
and october and november
and we can just re-reach this exact same crisis in december
give em more credit or the world will come to an end
6 more months of it
party on, peeps
Last edited by The Prof; 07-21-11 at 12:40 PM.
Obama signs bill to extend Bush-era tax cuts for two more years
In remarks before signing the bill, Obama called it "a substantial victory for middle-class families across the country." He added: "They're the ones hardest hit by the recession we've endured. They're the ones who need relief right now."
Obama described the bill as "a package of tax relief that will protect the middle class, that will grow our economy and will create jobs for the American people."
Sen. Conrad wants six-month debt-ceiling increase to buy time - The Hill's Blog Briefing RoomSenate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) on Thursday voiced support for a six-month hike to the debt ceiling.
Conrad, a member of the bipartisan Gang of Six that released a $3.7 trillion deficit-reduction package earlier this week, said he's always preferred an initial short-term hike to the $14.3 trillion ceiling to buy more time for lawmakers to work on legislative language for a broader deal.
"You know, I've always believed that there will be first a shorter-term extension. I would prefer one that's perhaps six months in duration so that you start the process ó you begin with a down payment, then you have time for the committees of Congress to come back with a floor package," Conrad said Thursday on MSNBC. "That's my own view of how this should work, and I think it's more in tune with the realities of the magnitude of the task."
Even supporters of the group's efforts have said there's not enough time to move the Gang's plan through Congress by an Aug. 2 deadline set by the Treasury Department for raising the ceiling. The plan would lower tax rates and eliminate $1 trillion in tax loopholes, something Conrad acknowledged would take time.
"The tax code is not going to be reformed in a matter of weeks ó that's going to take months and months of work," Conrad continued.
In April, he reiterated his insistence on tax increases.
Obama's Deficit Speech (Transcript) - Garance Franke-Ruta - Politics - The AtlanticThe fourth step in our approach is to reduce spending in the tax code. In December, I agreed to extend the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans because it was the only way I could prevent a tax hike on middle-class Americans. But we cannot afford $1 trillion worth of tax cuts for every millionaire and billionaire in our society. And I refuse to renew them again.
Beyond that, the tax code is also loaded up with spending on things like itemized deductions. And while I agree with the goals of many of these deductions, like homeownership or charitable giving, we cannot ignore the fact that they provide millionaires an average tax break of $75,000 while doing nothing for the typical middle-class family that doesn't itemize.
And then again in June, though in typically demogogic language:
http://politisite.com/2011/06/29/pre...011-full-text/So the question is, if everybody else is willing to take on their sacred cows and do tough things in order to achieve the goal of real deficit reduction, then I think it would be hard for the Republicans to stand there and say that the tax break for corporate jets is sufficiently important that weíre not willing to come to the table and get a deal done. Or, weíre so concerned about protecting oil and gas subsidies for oil companies that are making money hand over fist ó thatís the reason weíre not going to come to a deal.
I donít think thatís a sustainable position. And the truth of the matter is, if you talk to Republicans who are not currently in office, like Alan Simpson who co-chaired my bipartisan commission, he doesnít think thatís a sustainable position. Pete Domenici, Republican, co-chaired something with Alice Rivlin, the Democrat, says thatís ó he doesnít think thatís a sustainable position. You canít reduce the deficit to the levels that it needs to be reduced without having some revenue in the mix.
And the revenue weíre talking about isnít coming out of the pockets of middle-class families that are struggling. Itís coming out of folks who are doing extraordinarily well and are enjoying the lowest tax rates since before I was born.
The Gang's plan elminates the AMT and claims by doing so it saves $660 billion in middle class tax payments over the next 10 years. Problem is, the middle class never pays the AMT, because each year a "patch" is legisated exempting them from the tax.
It factors in another $750 billion over 10 years by counting tax credits now set to expire. Trouble there is many will almost certainly be renewed. Same with many of the Bush cuts. Allowing all of them to expire would lead to a middle class tax increase. That's why BO renewed them in December, then vowed never to make that mistake again. Considering he'll either be gone or reelected next time they come up, I believe him.
Tax increases are the very foundation of his position, of his progressive vision for America. He has been coy recently about exactly where he will apply them, but he has never given up on them.