The Leader's Ledger

Posted by Megan Whittemore on

Feeling a little off this morning? Almost like you lost an hour (or 54 minutes) of your day yesterday? We feel ya. TGIF. Yet it is still puzzling to us that it took the President 54 minutes to ask for the status quo, without putting forward new ideas to get the economy going or get people back to work. Small business hiring is stalled, teens and college grads are unable to find jobs and the “fine” private sector added less than 70,000 jobs in the month of May. As Leader Cantor said on Bloomberg this morning, “It is not very helpful for the President to continue to engage in a blame game. I think people want to see results, they want to see a better climate for businesses to grow in America, they want to see more opportunities for their families. I think what has been the case so far, is the President and his big-government, stimulus-spending policies have failed. That’s the problem. That’s what we need to change. That’s what this election is about. Really, it’s how do we get this economy back on track? To me it means look to the small business engine of the American economy, the backbone of our economy, and give entrepreneurs and investors some confidence so they can put their capital to work again and get Washington out of the way.” 

 Today In History: In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill incorporating the Boy Scouts of America, making them the only American youth organization with a federal charter. Since its founding, over 110 million Americans have been members, including George W. Bush, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Neil Armstrong, and Nolan Ryan.

Birthdays: Governor Bob McDonnell, Dana Bash, Ali Weinberg, Neil Patrick Harris, Courtney Cox, James Belushi, Wade Boggs, Helen Hunt, Andy Pettitte, Justin Leonard, and Ken Follett

Here AreThe Top Stories We’re Watching:

1. State Of Play: Leader Cantor: We Shouldn’t Be Raising Taxes On Anybody In This Ailing Economy. “I like to look at the backbone of the American economy, the small businessman or woman. They are having a very difficult time, and they are the big job generators overall. So, if you are asking what could we do or what could the President be doing to help the job generators and make it a little bit easier for them? Come out and say that taxes are not going to go up for small businesses, come out and say you are going to stop the regulatory overreach. Austan talks about the housing industry. Right now, you have such impediments in the way for lenders, for builders, for people wanting and looking for a house, given what’s been going on in this Administration. There are plenty of things they could come out tomorrow with and say we are going to make it easier and we are going to stop clogging the system, we are going to roll back some of these regulations that may have been well intended but have really skewed the ability for the comeback…I just went on a small business tour in my district in Richmond, Virginia and I can tell you that the small business people there did not think their taxes have gone down, they are worried about their taxes going up. As you know, on the books now is a law which will repeal all of the ’01, ‘03 rates for everyone. At the lowest end of the income level to the highest. We can’t have that. The best thing the President could do is say, right now taxes aren’t going to go up on anybody in this ailing economy.” Bloomberg

2. Nothing New: Milbank: President Obama Still Presents No Economic Plan For the Future. Despite his claim that “both parties have laid out their policies on the table,” Obama has made no serious proposal to fix the runaway entitlement programs that threaten to swamp the government’s finances…Of more concern is Obama’s nonsensical claim that he has a deficit plan that would strengthen Medicare for the long haul. He has called for doubling Medicare spending over the next 10 years, to nearly $1 trillion in 2022. His cuts in the rate of growth amount to just a few percentage points. As The Post’s Lori Montgomery has reported, the president’s 2013 budget marked “the second year in a row Obama has ignored calls to restructure Social Security and Medicare entitlement programs.”…Nothing in Obama’s speech came close to a proposal to fix the debt problem; he dealt with that only at the end of the speech — largely by complaining about Republicans’ refusal to consider higher taxes on the wealthy…But none of that is going to help Obama, because he hasn’t come up with a viable alternative. Washington Post

3. Obamanomics: Chief Deputy Whip Roskam: Obama’s Economic Speech Represented More of the Same. After weeks of bad economic news and public White House stumbles, President Barack Obama decided it was time to give another speech about the economy. He laid out his sweeping vision of America’s future—in hopes of distracting us from the failed policies of the past three and a half years. The fundamental problem is: Obama implemented his vision virtually unchecked during his first two years in the Oval Office. With the Congress of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Obama gave us the $800 billion failed stimulus, a government takeover of health care that increases costs and green energy programs that produce no energy. You can call Obama’s vision “Solyndranomics.” It’s basically about using taxpayer dollars for broad government intervention in the economy, often to support your donor’s speculative adventures…Remember, failures like Solyndra were made possible by another bad bet from Obama — the stimulus program. Which was laden with earmarks and payouts to liberal interests. The president promised the stimulus would handle the problems created by the economic collapse. But we’re struggling with a record 40 straight months of unemployment above 8 percent, with 23.2 million Americans now unemployed, underemployed or not even looking for work…As for the president’s signature legislative achievement — the government takeover of health care—the rhetoric of his reform is far from reality. Obama promised the law would lower costs, but family premiums are already increasing by as much as $1,600 a year. Politico

4. Small Biz: Small Business Owners Say Burdensome Regulations And ObamaCare Will Weaken Their Entrepreneurial Ability. Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce Chairman Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) today held a field hearing in Rock Hill, S.C., to examine regulatory obstacles to small business job creation, economic growth, and participation in the federal contracting arena. The hearing provided an opportunity for South Carolina small business owners to express their concerns about federal regulatory actions that are prohibiting small business growth, including the health care law, Environmental Protection Agency regulations, and requirements affecting small business procurement opportunities…Doug Meyer-Cuno, President of Carolina Ingredients in Rock Hill, SC said, “If you regulate us to death, surely you will suffocate us all. At best, ObamaCare will weaken our entrepreneurial fortitude; thus, minimizing our country’s sustainability as the world’s greatest economic engine. At worst, we’ll become a society dependent upon government to make our decisions that they think are in our best interests. This isn’t the model our country followed for the first 200 years. Or perhaps our politicians think they know what is best for me. History demonstrates all governments eventually fail under this philosophy. Do I want ObamaCare to fuel the government’s desire to mandate me and our business through unaccountable regulations? No thanks, I’ll take my 2% chance of creating a company and surviving twenty years over our government regulating me to death. Historically speaking, the odds of survival are on my side.” Small Business Committee

5. Tax Debate: CEO Of American Express: A Simple Tax Code Is A Fair Tax Code. President Obama says over and over again that high-income Americans don't pay their fair share of income taxes. He says this with such conviction and confidence that many believe him—the tax code is unfair because high-income people pay too little. True, there is a lot wrong with our tax code and it is unfair, but the president is simply wrong if he believes our highest earners are not paying their fair share. The top 1% of taxpayers pay more in federal income taxes than the bottom 90%. (The bottom 50% pay no income tax at all.)…Everyone earning the same amount of money should pay the same in federal taxes, regardless of how they earned their money and regardless of how they choose to spend it. What would be fair is all Americans paying federal taxes on all their income, whether it is earned in the form of cash or benefits, and paying taxes on earnings only once. Such a tax code would be very simple—count all income whether in cash or kind, whether in dividends or interest, whether in capital gains or salary…Such a tax code would be fair, transparent and consistent. After an appropriate phase-in, all deductions would be eliminated in return for a lower rate across the board. Compliance and reporting costs would be far lower, and I believe revenues would be higher. It would eliminate the need for individuals and corporations to spend billions trying to influence the tax code or avoiding the payment of taxes, thus contributing to savings and capital investments, spurring economic growth and creating jobs. Wall Street Journal

6. Health Care: New Study Confirms ObamaCare Won't Contain Health Costs. Actuaries at the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services, or CMS, issued a new report this week on the growth of health care costs. Not surprisingly, the Obama administration was quick to spin the release as vindication of the national health care law. "This report provides more evidence that the health care law will help control costs and save money for families while extending coverage to millions of Americans," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius claimed in a statement. In reality, the new CMS data actually confirms what ObamaCare's critics have been saying all along -- that the law will fail to contain health care costs, which was the primary justification for its existence. Despite Sebelius's claims, the study projected that as a result of ObamaCare, health care spending will be $478 billion higher from 2011 through 2021 than it would have been without the law. CMS cautions that its projections "remain subject to substantial uncertainty." If Medicare cuts, which are supposed to help finance ObamaCare, don't get implemented, costs will rise far higher. Washington Examiner

Off The Beaten Path:

Program Pairs Puppies With Ex-Panhandlers

Original Apple 1 Computer Goes Up For Auction

Restaurant Offers $450 Pizza

Boy Asks Girl To Prom With 1,500 Balloons


GOP Health Care Reforms