Yesterday, President Obama took to the podium and continued to push for tax increases as part of the debt deal. Despite the irony in his lecture about leadership, we're glad the President is finally joining the conversation about how to move forward with a debt limit increase that cuts spending and begins to get our fiscal house in order. After months of negotiations with Vice President Biden, Leader Cantor and Senator Kyl identified a framework of over $2 trillion in spending cuts, and we're ready to move forward as soon as the Democrats take tax hikes off the table.
The negotiations about increasing our nation’s debt limit are not about this loophole or that loophole, they are about the fact that raising taxes in a lagging economy will hurt job creation. As Leader Cantor has said for months, tax increases cannot pass the House. We need to focus on growth, managing down our debt and getting people back to work.
Today In History: In 1936, Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind, one of the best-selling novels of all time and the basis for a blockbuster 1939 movie, is published.
Birthdays: Christopher Nolan, Mike Tyson, Michael Phelps, David Alan Grier, Tubby Smith
Here is what’s in today’s Ledger ...
State Of Play: Republicans Remain Committed To Pro-Growth Policies, While President Obama and Democrats Hold The Line On Tax Hikes
The Need For Pro-Growth Policies, Not Tax Increases. President Obama was right about his audacity, if not always the hope. Six months after he agreed to a bipartisan extension of current tax rates, he is now insisting on tax increases as part of the debt-ceiling talks. At his press conference yesterday he repeated this demand, as well as his recent talking point that taxes are lower than they've been in generations. Let's examine that claim because it explains Washington's real revenue problem—slow economic growth. … Republicans should stick to their plan of insisting on spending cuts in return for a debt-ceiling vote. Every dollar in lower spending means one less dollar taken from the private economy in borrowing or future tax increases. As for revenues, they will increase when the economy shakes its lethargy caused by Mr. Obama's policies. A tax increase won't help growth—or revenues. Wall Street Journal
VIDEO: Steve Moore: President Obama Is Attempting To Raise Taxes On The Business People We Need To Create Jobs. If you look at people in that highest income tax bracket, that Obama was talking about, over half of those people are small business owners, operators or investors. They’re the people who create the jobs. Mr. President, how are you going to get the jobs you want to get this economy moving, if you’re going to raise taxes on the businesses that create the jobs? Fox News Channel
House Republicans Cut Spending, Live Up To “Pledge to America.” Six months into the Republican majority, a closer look at the GOP’s “Pledge to America” and its election-season promises shows the new majority has lived up to the agenda: The GOP passed a bill to repeal health care reform; it extended the Bush-era tax rates; it has been posting bills three days ahead of votes, as promised; and it has banned earmarks. House Republicans have also cut federal spending — though not nearly as much as promised — and they’ve cut their own congressional budgets. They also voted to end further federal funding for abortion. Politico
White House Pushes For More Tax Hikes…
• The Obama Administration Continues To Push For Higher Taxes. President Obama pressured Republicans on Wednesday to accept higher taxes as part of any plan to pare down the federal deficit…Mr. Obama, under assault from Republicans on the campaign trail for an unemployment rate that remains above 9 percent, asked voters to understand that the economic recovery would take time but said that Washington, even in its current financial straits, could still do more to help. New York Times
• Corporate Jet Tax Gets Six Obama Mentions, But Aids Little In Deficit Reduction. President Barack Obama’s proposal to end a tax break for corporate jet owners, a repeated refrain in his news conference yesterday, would achieve less than one-tenth of 1 percent of his target for reducing the federal deficit. … Obama mentioned the corporate jet break six times, criticizing Republicans’ unwillingness to include tax increases in legislation to raise the federal debt ceiling. Republicans are pressing for spending cuts in the measure, which must be passed before Aug. 2 … It would take much more than eliminating a break for corporate jets to complete the deal. The $3 billion proposal would generate 0.075 percent of the $4 trillion in deficit reduction that Obama is seeking through a combination of spending cuts and tax increases. Bloomberg
…Senate Democrats Follow Suit
• Senate Dems Forthcoming Budget Fails To Address The Biggest Drivers of Our Debt And Raises Taxes. The deal cannot cut Medicare benefits or slash Medicaid. It must raise tax revenues. It should make investments in infrastructure and green-energy technology to spur job growth. It should cut defense as well as domestic social spending…“The caucus wants to see revenues on the table, they want to see cuts in the Defense Department, they want fairness,” Rockefeller said. Democratic leaders have ruled out cuts to Medicare benefits. Rockefeller said he has helped convince them to take Medicaid cuts off the table as well. The Hill
The Obama Economy: Burdensome Regulations And Uncertainty Prevent Economic Growth
VIDEO: John Allison, Former CEO of BB&T Corporation Says Regulatory Environment Worst In All of Our Careers. The purpose of the Job Creators Alliance is to really let people hear from people that have created jobs and it's very interesting to contrast what the President said yesterday to my recent experience. Last weekend I was at a meeting of 200 entrepreneurs that collectively have created millions of jobs and they have three basic issues. One, the regulatory environment is the worst in all of our careers and I’ve been in the banking business for 40 years. We don't have rule of law. We have a rule of regulators and the regulators are on a witch hunt. Secondly, job creators are business people who are trying to make decisions, they are worried about the massive debt in government and they're worried about the fact that government spending has increased dramatically as a percentage of the gross national product, and they're worried about what's going to happen with taxes and tax policy in an interesting way - is that they're not just worried about the increase in taxes but if you look at the statistics, 5% of the population is paying 50% of the taxes. 50% of the population is paying no taxes. What are the public policy implications of that? Fox & Friends
40 Percent of Americans Now Believe The Economy Is In Permanent Decline. Roughly four in ten Americans now believes it is in permanent decline, according to a new CBS News/New York Times poll…Americans overwhelmingly cite the economy and jobs as their top concern, with 53 percent identifying it as the most important issue facing the economy. CBS
Dodd-Frank Regulations And Uncertainty Push Companies To Eliminate American Jobs. Why is Goldman Sachs pre paring to outsource traders, salespeople and investment bankers from here in America, where it has made untold billions over the years as Wall Street's premier trading firm, to places like Singapore and India? The answer can be found largely in the 2,000-plus pages of last year's Dodd-Frank financial "reform" law -- which will eventually translate into some 40,000 pages of regulations. The financial industry is still frozen, waiting to find out how bad these regs will turn out; but what all the CEOs of the big banks know for sure is that it's about to get a lot more expensive to do business here…It's not just Goldman, which wants to expand a once-tiny Singapore office by hiring 1,000 executives while it contemplates a major job reduction at home. (Yesterday, Goldman told the labor department it's cutting at least 230 jobs.) Just about every major US bank is looking at outsourcing as a way to pay for the new costs of doing business as regulators hammer out new rules. New York Post
Off The Beaten Path:
Newsweek Cover Imagines Princess Diana at Age 50 Associated Press
Woman Banned From Every WalMart In America For Life Digital Journal
Lady Gaga to Obama: Read Machiavelli Forbes