Obama’s Christmas Wish List Could Only Be Delivered by Santa Himself

November 30, 2012 at 5:34 pm (Fiscal Cliff, Joe Scarborough, President Obama, Santa Claus, Tim Geithner)

What parallel universe are officials in the Obama administration living in if they think this wish list is anywhere near reasonable?

Via the Washington Examiner:

Yesterday Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner presented Republican leaders on Capitol Hill with President Obama’s plan to avoid the fiscal cliff. The Geithner proposal asked for:

1. An immediate $1 trillion tax hike through higher top marginal income tax rates as well as higher taxes on both capital gains and dividends.

2. An agreement to raise $600 billion more in taxes later this year by limiting tax deductions for top earners.

3. $50 billion in new infrastructure stimulus spending.

4. Another “emergency” extension of unemployment benefits.

5. An extension of either the payroll tax cut or the reinstatement of Obama’s stimulus Making Work Pay tax credit.

6. A mortgage refinancing program.

7. Billions in new spending to prevent cuts to Medicare reimbursement payments for doctors.

8. An infinite debt limit hike.

Upon hearing Geithner’s wish list, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., reportedly “burst into laughter.” He should have patted Geithner on the head and offered him a candy cane instead.

A Politico report adds that this joke of an offer has stalled negotiations.

Hill Republicans immediately rejected the offer, with House Speaker John Boehner saying “no substantive progress has been made” on resolving the impasse.

Even MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough realized that the only intent behind the offer was to be provocative – it was not based in reality.  One Republican aide even referred to the offer as “unbalanced and unreasonable”.

Much like the President himself.  Or maybe he believes Santa Claus will deliver all of the items on his wish list?

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Are Republicans Set to Cave on Tax Hikes?

November 27, 2012 at 10:56 pm (Fiscal Cliff, Lindsay Graham, Medicaid, Medicare, Peter King, Saxby Chambliss, Social Security, Taxes)

A skilled poker player as they say, never shows his cards. Republicans seemingly haven’t heard such advice.  With ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations taking place in the media of late, they are proving to be poor poker players, poor negotiators, and all-to-willing to fold.

Several Republicans, responding weak-kneed in a kneejerk reaction to their 2012 election beating, have signaled a willingness to compromise on tax hikes, despite little indication that Democrats would make similar concessions with spending cuts. Senators Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Lindsay Graham (R-SC), and Peter King (R-NY) have gone so far as to walk back a no-tax pledge they placed their signatures upon.

Amelia Chasse, vice-president of Hynes Communications, says that while Americans are looking for both sides to come together after the election, Republicans should not be so quick to give away the farm.

Discussing the matter on Neil Cavuto’s show late last week, Chasse opined that, “In terms of raising taxes, I think Republicans will be making a huge mistake with their constituents if they agree to any proposal that raises taxes for the sake of raising taxes”.

According to a source with knowledge of the negotiations however, Republicans are set to do just that.  Their information indicates:

“We suspect that enough Republicans could support a top tax rate in the 37-38% range along with limits on deductions, which together would raise $600-800 billion over 10 years.  Along with a few other revenue provisions, the total deficit reduction from revenue could reach $1 trillion.”

The 37-38% represents an increase on the current level of 35%.  Chasse indicates that such a tax hike plan “would raise rates for some of the most vulnerable taxpayers in this economy – small business owners”.  Furthermore, limits on deductions would have the same economic effect as raising marginal rates on upper-income taxpayers even further.

Why would Republicans agree to such a plan?

“The key to Republicans going along with this tax increase,” the source adds, “is structural reform of entitlement programs”.  This would presumably involve such programs as Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare.  The wisdom being that meaningful deficit reduction can be accomplished through ‘means testing’ and raising the eligibility age.

FreedomWorks Vice President of Health Care Policy, Dean Clancy, doesn’t believe these methods will be successful.

“These two ideas are unpopular, and, while they are better than across-the-board cuts, they do not alter the underlying structural problems with the big entitlement programs or make them more voluntary for individuals.”

He adds, “If ObamaCare goes into effect, raising the Medicare retirement age will have the effect of increasing federal outlays for ObamaCare premium subsidies and for Medicaid.”

So a cave-in on tax hikes is being negotiated for the benefit of a deficit reduction plan that would likely be unsuccessful.  But at least an agreement and compromise on tax rates and entitlement reforms will lead to significant cuts in the deficit, avoiding an economic calamity, right?

Not quite…

The real key for a fiscal cliff breakthrough, according to the source, lies with the President himself.

“If he puts major entitlement reforms on the table, a grand bargain that reduces the deficit by roughly $2-2.5 trillion over ten years is likely.”

Such a ‘grand bargain’ would fall significantly short in terms of necessary deficit reduction over the next decade.

Clancy claims, “We would need more like $8 trillion in savings over 10 years to balance the budget within 10 years.”

Chasse agrees, stating that the President’s proposals “would barely make a dent in the deficit”.

With the fiscal cliff looming in the near future, Republicans are foolishly signaling a willingness to concede on tax hikes.  Such concessions – with little to no valuable reductions in spending and entitlements – indicate the party has not only lost the election battle of 2012, but they may be willing to surrender in the war on conservative fiscal values.

Cross-posted at FreedomWorks

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Surprise! Obama Administration Breaks the Law … Again

September 7, 2012 at 5:33 pm (Defense Cuts, Defense Spending, Fiscal Cliff, Jake Tapper, John Thune, Lawlessness, Military Cuts, Military Spending, Mitt Romney, Pentagon, President Obama, Sequestration)

Glenn Thrush, writer for the Politico, recently produced an e-book on the Obama campaign, that caused quite a stir.  While many have focused on the many conflicts the campaign has suffered this year – an issue with which they did not contend with as much in 2008 – there is another damning aspect of the book that was vastly under-reported.

Essentially, the President was willing to place his re-election bid above the needs of our economy and our national defense. 

Excerpts from the book claim that Obama rebuffed pleas from Nancy Pelosi of all people, to reconsider the sequestered defense cuts because doing so would make reelection more difficult.

Here are a couple of quotes from Thrush’s work that stand out:

“In mid-2012, the House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, requested a sit-down to ask Obama to reconsider the billions of defense cuts that would kick in automatically as part of the 2011 budget deal. The cuts included in ‘the sequester,’ she argued, would hurt Democratic House members with major defense contractors in their districts. They were asking for an alternative state of cuts, or any kind of plan that would keep local employers – and, by implication, local contributors – happy.” 

And…

“Obama told the former speaker what he had been saying for months – that he wasn’t budging on the defense cuts. Doing so would surrender his only leverage in forcing House Republicans to accept the expiration of tax cuts for the wealthy – the only weapon he had against their efforts ‘to delegitimize me,’ as he put it. Moreover, he bluntly called on Hill Democrats to reorient their priorities – from them to him. ‘Look, guys,’ he told Pelosi, Harry Reid, and several other congressional leaders, according to a person briefed in detail on the interaction. ‘I plan on winning this race. If I don’t win, then anything we say now doesn’t matter. I plan on winning this race. So let’s figure out how to win this race.’”

These are stunning claims that demonstrate a President willing to sacrifice the good of his own country, the good of the military men and women that he leads, for the good of his own political aspirations.

And now, Jake Tapper of ABC has another stunning followup to the story.  

White House officials today acknowledged that they had not met the deadline to outline how the president would make the defense cuts required by law to be made because of the failure of the bipartisan, poorly-named Super-committee to agree on $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction over the next ten years.

Because of the failure of the Super-committee, a self-imposed sword of Damocles will fall, requiring $1.2 trillion in spending cuts that neither Democrats nor Republicans desire, specifically $109 billion from Pentagon and domestic spending in just the next year.

In the fine Washington tradition of never giving anything a name that makes sense to anyone outside the 202 area code, these cuts are called the “sequester.”

Cuts to military and defense spending to the tune of $1.2 trillion, AND the administration broke the law?  Are you outraged yet?

Tapper outlines just how devastating this series of events is:

These cuts are set to take effect on January 1, coinciding with the expiration of $4 trillion in lower tax rates enacted into law by President Bush and extended by President Obama. Combined with the expiration of a payroll tax cut, the whole shebang – assuming no compromise is reached to delay the massive tax increases and spending cuts – is referred to as the “Fiscal Cliff.”

Weren’t Democrats trying to convince us last night that this President drives the car forward, while Republicans go in reverse?  That might actually be a truthful statement – the Obama administration is trying to drive the economy off a cliff, and Mitt Romney is trying to backpedal away from it.

In a statement, Sen. John Thune, R-SD, author of the bill said that “Americans of all stripes are required to play by the rules and follow the laws of the land. Unfortunately, by disregarding the sequestration reporting deadline, the Obama Administration seems to think it is above the law. The American people deserve to know the president’s plan for implementing these cuts, some of which our military leaders have said will compromise our nation’s ability to protect itself. Every day that the administration delays being transparent with the American people on the sequester moves us one day closer to going over the fiscal cliff.”

Mitt Romney added the following statement:

“A year ago, Barack Obama set in motion the sequestration process that is leading to imminent disastrous cuts in our military might. The President is required by law to tell the American people how he would implement these cuts. But he has chosen to ignore the deadline for doing so. The American people have had enough of evasion and enough of finger pointing. They just want answers. Secretary of Defense Panetta has said these cuts will be devastating to our national security and our economy. It’s time the President stops stonewalling, stops dismantling our military, and starts providing answers.”

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Democrats Willing to Play Chicken With the American Economy

July 16, 2012 at 4:12 pm (Bush Tax Cuts, Democrats, Economy, Fiscal Cliff, Jobs, Obamacare, Obamatax, Patty Murray, Recession, Republicans, Small Business, Tax the Rich)

Democrats have laid down the gauntlet, claiming they are willing to drive the American economy off the “fiscal cliff” if Republicans don’t agree to their demands to raise taxes on individuals and businesses making over $250,000 annually.

The Washington Post reports:

Democrats are making increasingly explicit threats about their willingness to let nearly $600 billion worth of tax hikes and spending cuts take effect in January unless Republicans drop their opposition to higher taxes for the nation’s wealthiest households.

Emboldened by signs that GOP resistance to new taxes may be weakening, senior Democrats say they are prepared to weather a fiscal event that could plunge the nation back into recession if the new year arrives without an acceptable compromise.

In a speech Monday, Sen. Patty Murray (Wash.), the Senate’s No. 4 Democrat and the leader of the caucus’s campaign arm, plans to make the clearest case yet for going over what some have called the “fiscal cliff.”

In other words, they are threatening to allow the economy to plunge into another recession if they can’t demand small businesses and job creators pay for their reckless entitlement spending during the Obama years.

Four straight years with a trillion dollar deficit, with Obama and the Democrats adding nearly $6 trillion to the national debt in the last three years, and now they are threatening to drive you over a cliff if they can’t collect more in taxes.

This from the PJ Tatler:

This is big, and it is outrageous: The fundamental difference between the two major parties is exposed for all to see. The Democrats want to punish job creators with higher taxes and are willing to hold middle class tax rates hostage to get what they want. The Democrats are lurching hard left on a pretty fundamental thing in an election year: the state of the economy. This is Jim Jones, drink-the-Koolaid stuff the Democrats are doing. They are threatening to hurt millions of Americans if the GOP doesn’t agree to raise taxes, taxes which may help bring the weak economy down if they are enacted. But if the GOP agrees to raise them it disappoints and dispirits its own base, and will share the blame for the consequences.

 Bear in mind, this threat comes on the heels of one of the biggest tax hikes in American history – the Obamacare Tax.

With businesses having to deal with the cost of the Obama Tax, and now having to worry about the Bush Tax cuts expiring, a double dip recession seems likely, while unemployment will most certainly remain stagnant or grow even higher.

Obama of course, was the man who said, “you don’t raise taxes on anyone during a recession”.

Now they’re going to demand taxes be raised and intentionally attempt to wreck the economy?

Politics.  Politics first, at the expense of sound fiscal policy.

Are you ready for the plunge?

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