December 21, 2014

Blogs

To Go Big, Keep Going

Members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (“super committee”) have a timing problem that compounds their political problem. Put simply, they may run out of time to reach agreement on the kind of comprehensive changes that are needed to put the nation’s finances on a sustainable path. However, with a little cooperation and a strong dose of leadership, they need not let the clock run out on their efforts.

AARP Ignores Need for Fiscal Reform

Last week, AARP doubled-down on its insistence that Social Security and Medicare benefits should be off the table in negotiations to stabilize the nation’s debt.

Seeking Solutions -- Two By Two

Last January, members of Congress paired up with colleagues of the opposite party for the State of the Union Address. It was a welcome, if symbolic, display of political civility.

In the ensuing months, Congress and the Obama administration have struggled to put this civility into practice as they have grappled with sincere disagreements over the best approach to meeting the nation’s fiscal and economic challenges.

Bernanke on Going Big in Both Ways

NOTE: an earlier version of this post appears on EconomistMom.com

Dynamic Deja Vu on Tax Policy

The “dynamic scoring” debate is back again.

Strengths and Weaknesses in Obama's Deficit Reduction Plan

President Obama deserves credit for putting Medicare and Medicaid on the table for deficit-reduction efforts and for encouraging the new super committee to exceed its assigned goal.

Obama's Proposals Could Boost Economy, But Effectiveness Depends on Long-Term Fiscal Reform

It is not inconsistent to provide effective short-term support for the economic recovery while laying the groundwork for long-term deficit reduction. To do so, however, Washington will have to move beyond the inflexibility and partisan vitriol of the recent debt limit debate.

Who are the Super Committee’s Constituents?

I heard from a long time Concord Coalition volunteer that some members of the joint congressional committee tasked with finding at least $1.5 trillion in deficit reductions over the next 10 years -- who are, as you might guess, being inundated with suggestions and ideas -- are only interested in hearing from their own home state and district constituents.  

This is unfortunate and another example of why the public must be the 13th Super Committee Member.  

Super Committee Republicans Already Showing More Willingness to Include Revenue-Side Solutions

The “no new taxes” pledge taken by Republicans in Congress has been a huge obstacle to achieving bipartisan agreement on a comprehensive deficit reduction plan. Many Republicans interpret the pledge as ruling out revenue increases of any kind, even those that close narrow loopholes and special interest deductions. The devotion seems to extend to a “grand bargain” for deficit reduction that would actually enact future cuts in tax rates, but pay for some of the revenue loss from those cuts by limiting deductions and loopholes.

The Super Committee’s 13th Member... You

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The Concord Coalition is calling upon the 12 members of the Congressional Super Committee to include a critical 13th member in their deliberations -- you. As we discussed in yesterday's post, The American People Want In, the Committee’s decisions will affect every American so it’s only right that every American has a voice in their deliberations.