Taylor Marsh (Blog)
Top Story — Move to Stop Obama’s Bad Lame Duck Entitlement Deal has Already Begun
THERE HAS been a determined conversation going on for weeks under the radar about what a second Obama term will mean, starting in the lame duck session. In fact, the electorate wanting a 62% change in Obama’s leadership, as well as his legacy view, will very likely set the stage for the inevitable “grand bargain” push.
CEOs Expand Ranks of Support for U.S. Budget Deficit Cut
The Campaign to Fix the Debt announced its expanded list of CEO support today. Among the campaign’s leaders are Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, the co-chairmen of President Barack Obama’s 2010 fiscal commission. “What we’re trying to do is drive support for the radical middle,” David Cote, CEO of Honeywell International Inc., said on a conference call with reporters.
The sham of Simpson-Bowles
Rep. Jan Schakowsky
They propose raising the age of full Social Security benefits to 69 – claiming that everyone is living longer. But a sizable percentage of Americans, mostly lower-income workers, especially women, are actually living shorter lives, and a large chunk of other Americans just can’t work that long – even if they can find a job. Their plan cuts benefits for current and future retirees by reducing the cost-of-living adjustment. For future retirees, all these changes taken together would reduce the average annual benefit for middle-income workers – those with annual earnings of $43,000 to $69,000 – by up to 35 percent.
Huffington Post (NAT)
Unnecessary Deficit Panic: Seven And A Half Things To Know
Sounds like the usual Business Roundtable malarkey, no? Lower tax rates, privatize Social Security and "broaden the base," which often means "make the Poors pay some more taxes." Except President Obama is coming close to saying the same thing. In an off-the-record, then on-the-record interview with the Des Moines Register released yesterday, Obama suggested that one of the first things he'd do after the election is take another stab at striking a "grand bargain" with Republicans on the deficit. With the glaring exception of wanting to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans, the terms of his plan do not sound all that different from the CEOs' -- he wants $2.5 of spending cuts for every $1 revenue raised, notes Ezra Klein of the Washington Post.
Talking Points Memo (NAT)
Obama Outlines Major Second-Term Agenda — And How He’ll Accomplish It
In an interview with editor and publisher of the Des Moines Register, which the White House initially insisted be kept off the record, President Obama outlined a list of significant policy objectives for his second term, and the political strategies he’ll use to achieve them. The agenda includes two major items — immigration reform and budget consolidation — that eluded him in his first term. And in an admission that will irk many of his supporters, Obama said he’d use his leverage — leverage he didn’t have in his first term — not to achieve a more progressive fiscal outcome, but to cut the same deal with Republicans he’s been pursuing for nearly two years.
Fixing our Fiscal Health: Budget Deficits and Health Care Costs
Unless you live in a cave, you’ve no doubt heard about the impending “fiscal cliff” – which is actually much more slope than cliff – and the need for major steps to fix our nation’s financial future. While the fiscal showdown is overhyped, the long-term deficits projections aren’t. So does this mean we’ll need to give Big Bird a pink slip? No. Cutting funding for PBS, Pell Grants, and Acorn doesn’t make a dent in future deficits. Neither do bigger changes, like ending the war in Afghanistan or ending the Bush tax cuts for high earners. The reason for this is that projections of future deficits are driven almost entirely by health care costs. Next to other industrialized nations, the U.S. healthcare system is wildly inefficient. Despite only average results, the U.S. spends more per person – in many cases twice as much – on health care than any other OECD country. Between Medicare, Medicaid, and a few smaller programs, the government buys about half of all health care, and therefore savings from lower costs would have a dramatic effect on deficits.
Talking Points Memo (NAT)
Romney-Ryan Plan Cuts Medicaid By $1.7 Trillion: Study
A new study underscores the far-reaching consequences of Mitt Romney’s plan to slash Medicaid spending and the stark contrast between the Republican candidate and President Obama’s vision for the program. The analysis (PDF), released Tuesday by the Urban Institute for the Kaiser Family Foundation, finds that a Medicaid program modeled on vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan’s budget blueprint, would slash the program’s funding by $1.7 trillion over 10 years.
Greenville Online (SC)
Letter: Romney will wipe out country's social progress
Eloise L. Rudy
Voters, be not deceived! When Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, women’s rights, and student loans for college are gone, they will be gone. Under a Romney administration, 50 years of American social progress could be wiped away in one four-year period. It would take generations of brave Americans to restore these vital safety nets. My husband and I are among the 47 percent of Americans that depend upon a government check every month. I check on the third of every month to be sure our Social Security checks have been deposited.
On Medicare and Social Security, 12 Senate Races Worth Watching
The future of Medicare, Social Security and other programs for older Americans may well be shaped by these 12 key races for seats in the U.S. Senate, all of which have been rated as tossups by RealClearPolitics or major news organizations. This is the first of a series of posts that we’ll do in the final days of the 2012 campaign, looking at how these races are playing out. Each entry includes excerpts from — and links to — stories about these races by local and national news organizations, as well a link to the AARP Voters’ Guide for that contest.
The Hill (NAT)
Obama supporters worry a Romney victory will kill parts of healthcare law
Romney has vowed to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But because that would require 60 votes in the Senate, he has also said he would issue “waivers” and executive orders to weaken the law as much as possible on his own. Romney said during Monday’s debate that he would reverse the healthcare law “as much as humanly possible.” Asked whether that was a tacit acknowledgement that all-out repeal is unlikely, Romney’s campaign said he was simply reiterating that he would do what he could as president while working with Congress on repeal.
Manassas Patch (VA)
Gov. Kaine Talks Social Security, Medicare With Senior Residents
Jamie M. Rogers
Kaine, a Democrat, told the audience at Birmingham Green, located just outside of Manassas Park, that he doesn’t support privatizing Social Security, which he says requires the working to set money aside in an account for themselves instead of using it to support older ones. He doesn’t want to change the way Social Security operates, Kaine said. “We should support a dignified retirement for the generation who raised us,” Kaine said Wednesday. He agrees there is always a need for finding reform, but Social Security isn’t contributing to the national debt, he added.