April 13, 2011 President Obama is getting conflicting advice on deficit-reduction, with conservatives telling him to focus on cutting entitlements while liberals advise him to raise taxes on upper income taxpayers. Indications are Obama will do both.
April 12, 2011 Now that details are out, it looks like there was considerable creative accounting used by congressional budget negotiators to get to their $38 billion total of cuts. For instance, they included $12 billion of cuts already in earlier spending pacts.
April 11, 2011 President Obama has been criticized for not leading with a major proposal to cut federal spending, letting Republicans go first. But now he is able to present his own proposal as a response to the most controversial aspects of the GOP plan, the cuts to entitlements and no tax increases for the rich.
March 15, 2011 The spending bill contained $6 billion in cuts, including earmarks and unused census money.
March 14, 2011 As the federal government approaches another shutdown, there's disagreement among House GOP freshman on whether they should hold out for all their spending cuts or compromise with Democrats.
February 24, 2011 Senate Democrats are developing a package of budget cuts for the current 2011 fiscal year. It's an acknowledgement that the current political climate requires cuts and the need to have a counteroffer to the House GOP's deep package of cuts.
February 16, 2011 Obama's claim that his budget wouldn't add to the national debt by mid-decade was ruled false by PolitiFact. The president relied on a really technical concept for support but it doesn't pass the common sense or smell test.
December 10, 2010 Polls show Americans don't want popular entitlement programs cut or taxes raised to fight deficits. It suggest leaders will need to persuade Americans of the need for sacrifice if they hope to make the kinds of cuts needed.
November 22, 2010 Joe Minarik, a budget expert, explains the difference between federal deficits and the debt and why experts are worried now that the ratio of the debt to the U.S. gross domestic product has soared past the 60 percent level.
November 17, 2010 A bipartisan plan for cutting federal debts and deficits includes a year long payroll tax holiday. It would proposes a new 6.5 percent national sales tax whose revenues would be used to reduce the national debt.
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner testifies before the House Budget Committee, March 2009.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo
November 16, 2010 Taming deficits and the debt is difficult because of ideological differences but also complexity. It was easier to send men to the Moon than ending deficits and the debt because we weren't concerned with fairness.
November 10, 2010 Pelosi called the plan "simply unacceptable" while House Republicans called it "provocative." The reaction was a measure of how difficult it will be for policymakers to take significant steps in the near term to make federal spending sustainable.
President Obama meets with members of the fiscal responsibility commission, April 27, 2010.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo
November 10, 2010 But a political firestorm is likely; many of the cuts and tax increases would be very unpopular. Among the proposals are cuts to Social Security and Medicare and and end to very popular tax deductions and credits.
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