The Leader's Ledger

Posted by Brian Patrick on

Good morning,

Tomorrow, when congressional leaders meet with President Obama at the White House to continue discussions on increasing the nation’s debt limit, Speaker Boehner and Leader Cantor will again make clear that tax increases cannot pass the House. Contrary to the President’s silly press conference claims last week, Republicans did not walk away from the table over tax loopholes. The tipping point was the Democrats’ insistence that we raise taxes on families and small businesses at a time when we all should be focused on economic growth and job creation. The $2 trillion plus in spending cuts identified by the Biden Group can provide the framework for a potential agreement moving forward. We now need the President and his party to drop their calls for tax hikes and join us on a measure to ensure America pays its bills that cuts spending, begins to get our fiscal house in order and spurs economic growth.

Today In History: In 1933, Major League Baseball’s first All-Star Game took place at Chicago’s Comiskey Park. Originally billed as a one-time “Game of the Century,” it has now become a permanent and much-loved fixture of the baseball season.

Birthdays: George W. Bush, Nancy Reagan, Sylvester Stallone, 50 Cent, Janet Leigh, Ron Duguay, Merv Griffin, and Burt Ward

Here is what’s in today’s Ledger ...

State Of Play: The Democrats’ Insistence On Raising Tax Rates on Small Businesses and Families Is A Non-Starter

Politico Scorches Dem Tax Rhetoric: The Dems’ Argument Amounts To “Hardly A Hill Of Beans” and Is “Not The Magic Key” To Long Term Deficit Reduction. If it seems ridiculous that the nation’s economy would crash over the question of how much to tax the jet set, that’s because it is. But you’d never know it from the rhetoric. “My Republican colleagues have walked away from the negotiating table when we were nearing a solution and so close to disaster,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday. “Why? To protect oil companies. To protect the owners of yachts and corporate jets. To protect corporations that ship jobs overseas. To protect millionaires and billionaires from paying their fair share.” The reality is that yacht and jet provisions add up to very little — hardly a hill to government bean counters — and they’re certainly not the magic key that will unlock a deal to raise the nation’s debt limit. Politico

  • Republicans Oppose Democrats’ Effort To Raise Taxes On Families and Small Businesses. Cantor is expected to expound this week on his view that it’s the big-ticket items on the tax side — not corporate jets — that led him to leave the negotiations. “Eric plans on going to the White House on Thursday and will tell the president directly that a tax increase simply will not pass the House,” Cantor spokesman Brad Dayspring said. “Contrary to President Obama’s unserious claims last week, House Republicans aren’t objecting to this loophole or that. Republicans oppose raising taxes on families and small businesses at a time when we all should be focused on economic growth and job creation.” Politico

Senate Budget Chairman To Unveil Over $2 Trillion In Tax Hikes. Democrats’ Senate Budget chairman will present a spending plan to his party leaders Wednesday that seeks to cut the federal deficit through an equal split of tax hikes and spending cuts. Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (N.D.) will brief Democratic leaders on a budget that significantly raises government tax revenues in order to reduce the deficit, according to Senate sources. ... The plan will balance the burden of reducing the deficit roughly 50-50 between increasing tax revenues and cutting government spending, sources said. ... Given a one-to-one ratio of new tax revenues to spending cuts, tax increases and the elimination of special tax breaks would total more than $2 trillion. The Hill

By Nearly A 2-1 Margin, Americans Say Cutting Spending and Reducing The Deficit Should Be The Focus, Not More Stimulus Spending. Given a choice, 59 percent of Americans prefer reducing debt even if that slows the economic recovery, while 33 percent prefer new government efforts to stimulate the economy even if it means more federal spending. ... Among those polled, people ages 18-29 were the most worried about the long-term debts. By 64-30 percent, they wanted the government to cut the debt. Those ages 30-44 were the least worried about the debt and the most worried about the economy now. In that age group, 40 percent wanted the government to focus on stimulating the economy, while 51 percent wanted the top priority to be debt. Among registered voters, Democrats were the only group that favored spending more to stimulate the economy rather than cutting debt, leaning that way by 50-45 percent. Independents favored targeting the debt by 61-32 percent, and Republicans by 79-15 percent. The Miami Herald

VIDEO: A Skyscraper of Debt – Congressman Patrick McHenry breaks down the debt limit debate and what’s at stake for families and small businesses

The Obama Economy: The Obama Administration Continues To Push Backward Economic Policies

Why We Need A Pro-Growth Strategy: 70% Of Small Business Owners Say They Have No Plans To Expand Due To Economic Uncertainty. The owners of many small businesses say economic uncertainty and inflationary pressures have led them to delay hiring and capital expenditures. Seventy percent have no plans to expand their staffs over the next 12 months, according to a recent U.S. Bancorp survey of 1,004 U.S. companies with annual revenue of $10 million or less. While about half projected higher revenue a year from now, 78% said the U.S. economy is still in a recession, and many expected it to remain there next year. ... Phoenix Products Inc., an Avon Lake, Ohio, faucet maker, is also proceeding with caution, putting hiring, system upgrades and product updates on hold to conserve cash in case of another downturn. "Things are OK right now, but I'm acting as if we're in the midst of the recession because of all of the economic uncertainty," Phoenix President Raymond Arth says. His caution stems from recent unemployment and housing-market data, as well as the growing federal deficit. The Wall Street Journal

Obama Economists, Past and Present, Ignore The Need To Cut Spending and Remove Regulatory Barriers, Focus On Higher Taxes and More Stimulus. Bottom line: But the basic problem here is that Romer, like the rest of Obama’s all-star team, is worried about stimulating consumer demand rather than encouraging — by the removal of tax and regulatory barriers – established businesses and new entrepreneurs to invest, expand, hire and create. And talk of raising taxes distracts from the real work that needs to be done to reduce spending. Whenever economists talk about the need to raises taxes, they are actually making a political argument rather than an economic one. Either they are ideologically opposed to smaller government or they don’t believe Washington will ever cut spending. But that isn’t surprising since there really isn’t a valid economic argument to support the long-term Obama spending binge. Reuters

Chairman Whitfield: The Obama Administration Is Moving Full Speed Ahead On Regulation With Little Regard For Its Impact On Jobs. “It is unprecedented the number of major regulations this administration is putting out,” he said, “and I can’t tell you how many calls and meetings and letters I have asking, ‘Is there any way to slow E.P.A. down?’ ” “What’s troubling to us,” Mr. Whitfield continued, “is that President Obama on the one hand is saying we have to be really careful about these regulations and consider the impact on jobs and the economy, but over at the agency they’re just going full speed ahead with minimal attention or analysis on job impact.” The New York Times

  • EPA Chief Stands Firm On Job-Destroying Regulation: In the next weeks and months, Lisa P. Jackson, the Environmental Protection Agency administrator, is scheduled to establish regulations on smog, mercury, carbon dioxide, mining waste and vehicle emissions that will affect every corner of the economy. ... The new rules will roll out just as President Obama’s re-election campaign is getting under way, with a White House highly sensitive to the probability of political damage from a flood of government mandates that will strike particularly hard at the manufacturing sector in states crucial to the 2012 election. The New York Times

Committee Check

Video Launch – Veterans' Affairs Readies The Veteran Opportunity Work Act, A Republican Jobs Bill Aimed At Getting Our Unemployed Veterans Back To Work

Getting To Know The Freshmen

Rick Berg: Rep. Rick Berg brings more than twenty-five years of committed public service and private business experience to Washington, D.C. as he serves as North Dakota’s sole member in the U.S. House of Representatives. Born and raised in North Dakota, Rep. Berg was first elected to the North Dakota House of Representatives in 1984. While in the Legislature, he served as both Majority Leader and Speaker of the House. Rep. Berg is also a well-respected business leader in North Dakota. His legislative work has allowed him to work closely with many of North Dakota’s business leaders, and in December 2009, Rep. Berg was awarded the Greater North Dakotan Award, the highest honor given by the North Dakota Chamber of Commerce, for working to strengthen North Dakota’s business climate. Rep. Berg and his wife Tracy, a physician practicing family medicine in Fargo, have one son, Jack.

Off The Beaten Path

PSA: Giant Plant That Causes Blindness, Blisters Spreading Across NY – NY Post

Hope He Has A Parachute In That Backpack

What Are You Looking At Clown?

GOP Health Care Reforms