The Leader's Ledger

Posted by Brian Patrick on

Good morning, 

  • Does the President still support ending the current tax rates for those making $250,000 above or do does he agree with Senator Schumer that it would hurt working families and small businesses? 
  • Does the President support a 5.6% surtax for millionaires in addition of the current plans to raise taxes on individuals making over $200,000 and couples making $250,000 per year?
  • The President promised that the $800 billion stimulus would keep unemployment below 8% - of course we all know it didn’t - so how can he guarantee that his $447 billion plan will create over a million jobs?
  • Does the President support Secretary Geithner's belief that Washington should 'prevail' over banks?
  • Does the President believe that banks don't have a right to a certain amount of profit?
  • Does the President believe that the Administration should continue acting as venture capitalists with taxpayer dollars as was the case with Solyndra?
  • How can the President guarantee that any of the taxpayer dollars in his jobs bill won't go to a similar failed ventures?
  • And finally, just for fun, how many times will he say some version of “pass my bill?”

Despite jetting around the country on Air Force One to Republican districts throughout the country, the President’s biggest hurdle remains those in his OWN party rejecting his tax increases and stimulus spending. As House Republicans have made clear, we’re ready to work together on elements of his plan where we can produce results right away – and will do so in the next month. Maybe when the President steps down from the podium (and off of the campaign trail) he’ll realize that it’s time to work with those of us in Congress who are ready to grow this economy and get people working again.

Today In History: In, 1926, Yankee slugger Babe Ruth hits a record three homers against the St. Louis Cardinals in the fourth game of the World Series. The Yanks won the game 10-5, but despite Ruth’s unprecedented performance, they lost the championship in the seventh game.

Birthdays: Rep. Steve Scalise, Amy Jo Johnson, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Jacqueline Obradors and Tony Dungy

Here is what’s in today’s Ledger ...

State Of Play: It’s Time For President Obama To Abandon His All Or Nothing Approach and Work With Congressional Republicans 

Leader Cantor: The President’s All Or Nothing Approach Isn’t The Solution, The Focus Must Be On Areas We Can Agree On. Frankly there's some things in the President’s Bill that Republicans in the House and I would say most Members of the House beyond even Republicans don't support, including increased taxes. Republicans certainly don't support another attempt at a stimulus program. However, there are some things in the President’s bill we do agree with. We do agree with an attempt to try and roll back some regulatory reform, the President mentioned that in his speech when he came to the joint session of Congress. Republicans are doing that each week. The President also talks about free trade agreement, and we want to do that. We'll hopefully do that next week. The President talks about some other things we can do on the tax side together for small business. Those are the kinds of things the President has proffered, but his all or nothing approach on his bill is not the way that anyone does business. if the President is serious about working with us, let's get do to business, let’s stop the politics. CNBC’s The Kudlow Report

State Of Play (2): Senate Democrats Have Already Begun To Reject Harry Reid’s Proposed Tax Increase

Lacking The Votes: Senate Democrats Continue To Reject The President’s Proposal After Senate Leaders Make Changes. Republicans scoffed Wednesday at the ploy, which Democrats acknowledge is unlikely to succeed in its immediate goal of rallying support for Obama’s $447 billion jobs package. Several Democrats, including Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), oppose increased spending in the bill at least as much as the tax hikes Obama urged as a way of covering the cost. No Republican is likely to vote for the measure, making it impossible for Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) to muster the 60 votes needed to avert a filibuster when he opens debate on the bill as soon as next week. The Washington Post

  • Senator Ben Nelson Already A “No” On New Dem Proposal. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) has said he would vote to block any bill containing a tax increase — and others have also been skittish about tax hikes. Roll Call

Leader Cantor On The Democrats’ Proposed Surtax: There they go again, Washington Democrats insisting on raising taxes on job creators right now. That is not what we need. I think most people think it is counter intuitive to raise taxes if you want economic growth. We are in a global economy and it is a competitive world out there. There are all kinds of places for capital to flow. We want investment capital here, we want America to be the best place to do business and grow. You do not do that by raising taxes or chasing off investment capital that we need so desperately right now to get going again. Bloomberg

Fuzzy Math/Bad Timing: Senate Dems Forced To Push Back The Timing Of Their Proposed Tax Hike, Increase The Size of The Hike To Cover The Cost. GOP claims that there is more style than substance to the surtax gained support late Wednesday when Democrats abruptly upped the proposed levy to 5.6 percent from the 5 percent offered earlier in the day. After reporters peppered White House press secretary Jay Carney with questions about the wisdom of imposing the tax in January 2012, when the economy is likely to still be weak, Senate Democrats pushed the implementation date back a year. But that required raising the rate to ensure that the surtax generates enough cash over the next decade to cover the full 10-year cost of the jobs bill. The Washington Post

  • Et Tu, New York Times? NYT Editorial Board Scolds Obama, Thrashes Senate Democrats Over The President’s Job Bill. he has not been as forceful in pressing the other lawmakers holding up his bill: Senate Democrats. Nearly a month after the president proposed his jobs bill, it has not yet been taken up in the chamber controlled by his party. “We’ll get to that,” Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, said last month, after taking up a misguided bill to punish China for currency manipulation. The truth is that Mr. Reid has not had enough Democratic votes to even claim a Senate majority. The New York Times

The Road Ahead: Instead Of Pushing For Higher Taxes, Another Stimulus and Even More Regulations, President Obama Should Focus On Pro-Growth Solutions

77% Of Americans Say The Economy Is In A Recession. American voters disapprove 55 - 41 percent of the job President Barack Obama is doing, an all- time low and say 77 - 20 percent that the economy is in a recession, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Voters say 44 - 11 percent that the economy is getting worse, not better, while only 29 percent say the economy will improve if the president is re-elected. Quinnipiac

  • Labor Reports Highlight The Need For President Obama To Adopt A Pro-Growth Strategy. U.S. businesses hired more workers in September than August, according to a report Wednesday, but the growth remained far too slow to bring down the high unemployment rate. In further worrying signs for the labor market, separate reports Wednesday showed that layoffs surged in September and that services businesses aren't hiring more workers despite the sector's relatively strong growth. ... More worrying, Mr. Ashworth said, was a report released Wednesday by outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas that showed a sharp rise in layoff announcements in September. Employers planned to cut 115,730 workers last month, the report said, more than double the August tally and the worst in more than two years. The Wall Street Journal
  • Uncertainty Over Taxes, Regulations and Health Care Costs Continue To Stifle Economic Growth, Job Creation. The recovery from the recession of 2008-09 remains anemic. Job growth has stalled, unemployment stands above 9 percent, and there are renewed fears of another output drop. A major factor behind the weak recovery and gloomy outlook is a climate of policy-induced economic uncertainty. An index we devised shows U.S. policy uncertainty at historically high levels. We constructed our index by combining three types of information: the frequency of newspaper articles that refer to economic uncertainty and the role of policy, the number of federal tax code provisions set to expire in coming years, and the extent of disagreement among forecasters about future inflation and government spending. ... When businesses are uncertain about taxes, health-care costs and regulatory initiatives, they adopt a cautious stance. Because it is costly to make a hiring or investment mistake, many companies will wait for calmer times to expand. If too many businesses wait, the recovery never takes off. Weak investments in capital goods, product development and worker training also undermine longer-run growth. Bloomberg

Keeping Tabs

Digging Deeper: The Obama Administration Was Close To Approving A Second Loan Of $469 Million For Solyndra. Newly released e-mails show the Obama administration’s Energy Department was poised to give Solyndra a second taxpayer loan of $469 million last year, even as the company’s financial situation grew increasingly dire. The department was still considering providing the second loan guarantee to the solar-panel manufacturer in April and May 2010, at a time when Solyndra’s auditors were already warning that the company was in danger of collapsing. ... Republican leaders said that documents obtained in recent weeks show that Obama’s “closest confidantes” monitored the loan, and that his campaign donors offered advice on the company. “Documents reveal a startlingly cozy relationship between wealthy donors and the president’s confidantes, especially in matters related to Solyndra,” Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), chairman of the committee’s investigations panel, said in a statement. The Washington Post

ICYMI – Schumer Admits Repealing The Bush Tax Cuts Would Hurt Small Business. “In the eyes of many, it is hard to ask more of households making $250,000 or $300,000 a year,” he said Wednesday. “In large parts of the country, that kind of income does not get you a big home or lots of vacations or anything else that is associated with wealth. It also would affect too many small businesses.” Politico

Remembering Steve Jobs


  • @EricCantor: There is not a day that goes by, and often not an hour, that a Steve Jobs invention does not better my family's life. Thank you Steve.
  • Steve Jobs ... His Vision Changed The World Wired

Off The Beaten Path

Update: Washington Monument External Earthquake Inspection Complete – The Washington Post


GOP Health Care Reforms