- “From fiscal 2009 to fiscal 2012, the deficit shrank 3.1 percentage points, from 10.1% to 7.0% of GDP,” reports Investors Business Daily, citing figures from the Congressional Budget Office. IBD notes that that larger-than-expected returns from bank bailouts, slowing growth in Medicare costs, the drawdown in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the $900 billion in already enacted Budget Control Act cuts also helped curb the deficit. Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/11/21/the-deficit-is-already-shrinking-in-one-chart/
1. The Campaign to Cut Waste is hunting down and eliminating misspent tax dollars in every agency and department across the federal government. Already, the Administration has identified $3 billion in information technology cost reductions, is shutting down hundreds of duplicative data centers, and getting rid of excess federal real estate. Learn more
The President discussed the need to tackle our deficits over the long term through tax reform that asks those who can afford it to pay their fair share and modest adjustments to health care programs like Medicare. Though the issues of debt and deficits have dominated much of the recent conversation in Washington, the most immediate concern of most Americans is job creation and growing our economy. That is why President Obama laid out some common sense steps that can be taken right away to spur economic growth such as extending the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance:
Specifically, we should extend the payroll tax cut as soon as possible, so that workers have more money in their paychecks next year and businesses have more customers next year.
We should continue to make sure that if you’re one of the millions of Americans who’s out there looking for a job, you can get the unemployment insurance that your tax dollars contributed to. That will also put money in people’s pockets and more customers in stores.
In fact, if Congress fails to extend the payroll tax cut and the unemployment insurance benefits that I’ve called for, it could mean 1 million fewer jobs and half a percent less growth. This is something we can do immediately, something we can do as soon as Congress gets back.
To learn more about President Obama’s plan for reform and fiscal responsibility: http://www.whitehouse.gov/economy/reform
April 16, 2012
Dear Senator Mark Pryor and Senate Republicans,
On behalf of the Patriotic Millionaires, we are deeply disappointed that Monday you voted against bringing the “Buffett Rule” to the Senate floor for an open and transparent debate.
This is not a time for partisanship or political games. This is not an issue of left or right, Democrat or Republican. This is an American issue, and the future of American democracy demands that this issue come to a vote.
Given the dire state of our economy, it is absurd that one-quarter of all millionaires pay a lower tax rate than millions of working, middle-class American families.
The “Buffett Rule” is not the only thing we need to do to ensure the success of our country, but it is certainly the most obvious. Senate Republicans and Senator Mark Pryor refusing Monday to even consider this vital step is ridiculous.
CEOs make the case for a grand bargain
October 25, 2012 Posted by Suzy Khimm – washingtonpost
A group of high-profile business leaders sounded the alarm about the deficit on Thursday morning—this time quite literally. Top executives from Honeywell, JPMorgan and Express Scripts rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange as part of a campaign to enact major deficit reduction through the negotiations over the “fiscal cliff.”
Companies and economists have warned that the economy would take a major blow if Congress did not act on the tax increases and automatic budget cuts set to go into effect at the beginning of next year. But the CEOs of the “Fix the Debt” campaign have a much bigger agenda: Their push is not just to head off the economic impact of the fiscal cliff but also to use the negotiations as a springboard for major deficit reduction that includes both tax increases and spending cuts.
The group is pushing to replace fiscal cliff’s major austerity measures — averting the impact of taking more than $700 billion out of the economy in 2013 — with an alternative package that would reduce the deficit even more but that would take effect farther down the road.
“This plan should be enacted now, but implemented gradually to protect the fragile economic recovery and to give Americans time to prepare for the changes in the federal budget,” the “Fix the Debt” campaign says in a statement supported by more than 80 chief executives, including the heads of Invesco, UPS and Aetna.
Such a grand bargain “must be bipartisan,” the statement said. The group seeks to reform Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security and suggest comprehensive, rate-lowering, base-broadening tax reform. The group also advises that Simpson-Bowles recommendations serve as a framework for the plan.
President Obama is working with leaders of both parties in Washington to reduce the deficit in a balanced way so we can lay the foundation for long-term middle-class job growth and prevent your taxes from going up.
Your voice and action helped re-elect President Obama, and hundreds of thousands of you have already responded to our survey, which will help shape our next steps. Thanks to your feedback, we’re taking immediate action on one of your suggestions: keeping you informed about how the President is fighting for you so you can continue to talk to your friends, family, and neighbors. So here’s the deal:
* Middle-class taxes could go up $2,200 and important investmens could be slashed at the end of this year unless Congress acts.
This is the “Fiscal Cliff” and the President has a concrete plan to reduce the deficit so we an grow the economy.
Here is what President Obama’s plan does:
1) Extends tax cuts for 98% of Americans and 07% of small businesses immediately
2) Eliminates tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans
3) Cuts spending by more than $3 Trillion including cuts President Obama has already signed into law
If you want to pass a deficit reduction plan, you might want to give the task to one set of experts whose ideas would get more notice than your garden variety think-tank white paper: President Bill Clinton’s former Treasury staff. So that’s exactly what the Center for American Progress has done.
On Tuesday, CAP unveiled a tax reform plan written by a rogue’s gallery of Clinton vets, including former treasury secretaries Robert Rubin and Larry Summers, deputy treasury secretary Roger Altman, White House chief of staff John Podesta, commerce secretary Bill Daley and others. Summers and Daley, as well as report co-author and CAP president Neera Tanden, all held high-ranking posts in the Obama administration.
The $4 trillion deficit-reduction plan the group came up with raises $1.8 trillion in new revenue through tax reform, $1.5 trillion through enforcing existing budget caps, and $485 billion in cuts to Medicare and defense spending. It adds $400 billion in stimulus and infrastructure investments meant to help growth. If implemented, that proposal would get debt-to-GDP down to 72 percent in 2022, or about where it is today. The importance of that measure is highly questionable, but insofar as one wants deficit reduction, the plan accomplishes that goal.’
President Obama has met with members of Congress, Govenors, CEOs, Labor Leaders, Liberal Leaders and Women’s Groups to discuss the 2013 budget.
“I can only do it with the help of the American people,” President Obama said. “Do what it takes to communicate a sense of urgency. We don’t have a lot of time here.”
President Obama Wants You to Speak Out on Passing the Middle Class Tax Cuts
Matt Compton November 28, 2012 02:49 PM EST
Surrounded by Americans who had written into the White House in support of his plan, President Obama today renewed his call to prevent a tax increase on the middle class.
“If Congress does nothing, every family in America will see their taxes automatically go up at the beginning of next year,” the President said. “A typical middle-class family of four would see its income taxes go up by $2,200. That’s $2,200 out of people’s pockets. That means less money for buying groceries, less money for filling prescriptions, less money for buying diapers. It means a tougher choice between paying the rent and paying tuition. And middle-class families just can’t afford that right now.”
To help find an agreement President Obama pledged to keep up the pressure — meeting with lawmakers, labor leaders, and business executives. And he called on the American people to speak up and add their own voices to the debate.
“If there’s one thing I’ve learned, when the American people speak loudly enough, lo and behold, Congress listens,” he said.
So today, I’m asking Congress to listen to the people who sent us here to serve. I’m asking Americans all across the country to make your voice heard. Tell members of Congress what a $2,000 tax hike would mean to you. Call your members of Congress, write them an email, post it on their Facebook walls. You can tweet it using the hashtag #My2K.
Contact your Congress person to TELL THEM TO START WORKING WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA TO HELP AMERICA’S RECOVERY!!