Why deficit hawks are missing in action on budget, tax deals

23 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

A School Voucher Surrender.

Washington — Congress is about to add hundreds of billions of dollars to the national budget deficit, yet the “deficit hawks” on Capitol Hill are largely silent. House Speaker Paul Ryan is poised to break an explicit pledge not to touch immigration as speaker Friday, when he’s expected to allow a catch-all spending bill to the floor that includes a contentious expansion of the H-2b visa program.Donald Trump informed viewers that “our country is out of control” and raised the possibility that “we’re just going to go weaker, weaker, and just disintegrate.” If Americans weren’t already feeling angry and unsafe before they watched Tuesday night’s Republican presidential debate, they surely would have been feeling furious and frightened by the end.Congressional Republicans knew that a big government spending bill would have to pass before the holidays to prevent a shutdown, and they hoped to leverage the situation to achieve all kinds of policy goals before the deadline.

Ryan made the pledge in October in a bid to reassure members of the House Freedom Caucus reluctant to back him for speaker, because of his past support for dramatically liberalized immigration laws. Aware that Republican leaders will need their votes to pass the $1.15 trillion bill, many House Democrats on Thursday broadcast their objections to the legislation, which would prevent a funding lapse when the government runs out of money at 12:01 a.m. on Dec. 23.

So when I went to the Capitol on Wednesday morning, to the basement rooms where House Republicans were having their weekly meeting, I thought somebody was playing a little joke. The key to the strategy would be something called “riders” – specific measures added to appropriations bills – that GOP lawmakers saw as the ideal vehicle to pass their priorities. Liberal Democrats oppose the bill’s provision lifting the four-decade ban on oil exports, and some said the measure should have addressed Puerto Rico’s financial crisis.

There, decorating the lectern and the backdrop for GOP leaders’ news conference was a Twitter-style hashtag advertising House Republicans’ new theme: “Confident America.” Was this meant to be ironic? But this year’s double whammy – a $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill and a tax bill expected to cost $780 billion over the next 10 years – is arguably worse. Mo Brooks drew up a letter spelling out promises Ryan had made to the HFC behind closed doors, and delivered it to Ryan for confirmation, before entering it into the Congressional Record.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) flatly refused to deliver assurances that Democrats would deliver enough votes Friday for the bill to pass, though she gave it her personal support. “They’re in charge,” Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D., Ill.) said of House Republicans. “If they don’t have the votes, then let’s utilize that power to have a fairer, more balanced, more beneficial budget moving forward.” Democrats’ objections are expected to narrow the bill’s passage, but not derail it. The negotiations over the spending bill, for example, took place in much the same way and produced similar results as they did under Boehner, but with almost none of the acrimony or divisiveness that had become the hallmark of Boehner’s tenure.

But as Boehner’s torment has morphed into Ryan’s triumph, one big question facing House Republicans is whether Ryan’s speakership will fundamentally change the way the party functions or whether the speaker is just enjoying a post-Boehner honeymoon. “There are people who are willing to take a risk with him, willing to jump,” Rep. The Daily Caller asked GOP House members their thoughts of the measure immediately following the news of its inclusion on Wednesday and most did not know about it. Ryan boasted about “bipartisan, bicameral compromise” on major spending and tax bills that were a “big win” for jobs, manufacturing and foreign policy.

Many of the lawmakers who have spoken out in the past for fiscal restraint “are just being silent,” says Maya MacGuineas, CRFB president and a longtime advocate for lower federal deficits. “There is no leadership on the issue.” New leadership: In September, an impasse with conservative hard-liners over FY 2016 spending forced Speaker John Boehner to announce his resignation to avoid “prolonged leadership turmoil.” But he stepped down at the end of October only after negotiating a long-term budget agreement that averted a government shutdown. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) said. “I like Boehner, obviously, but he had gotten toxic, and I think it became easier for people to say no to him.” The conservatives who balked at Boehner’s top-down leadership style say Ryan has sent the right signals, even if the final product of the spending talks isn’t any more palatable to them than what Boehner might have negotiated.

He hailed “one of the biggest steps toward a rewrite of our tax code that we have made in many years.” And for those who don’t like it? “Look, in divided government, you don’t get everything you want,” he said. “And I understand that some people don’t like some of the aspects of this, but that is the compromise that we have.” The juxtaposition was jarring: at night the presidential candidates’ rage and alarm and, the next morning, the speaker’s chipper calm. In terms of the Ryan’s broken pledge and the upcoming spending vote, a representative for the Judiciary Committee simply told TheDCNF the provision will “protect American jobs.” Rep.

It offers seasonal non-agricultural employment in the United States and is available to nationals of countries designated by the Secretary of Homeland Security. While Republicans were able to extract an end to the 40-year-old ban on exports of U.S. crude oil, they failed to secure significant curbs on Obama administration policy initiatives, including labor, financial and environmental regulations. Boehner revived it after President Obama had killed it, and a few months after the House passed a bill to reauthorize it, we’ll have to fight the battle all over again.

You stop having to pay them not to do something and you get to pay them for doing something.” King proposed nine different amendments intended to defund a number of federal programs, including the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran. These foreigners work in occupations including cooking, hospitality, construction and maintenance for as little as three months and many as three years on the visa.

Conservatives credit Ryan with moving to open the appropriations process in the immediate aftermath of the budget deal negotiated by Boehner in his final days, an accord that lifted spending caps that many Republicans wanted to maintain. An Economics Policy Institute analysis of federal data in March found there are many more unemployed workers than job openings in many of these industries. Only 79 House Republicans voted for the two-year budget deal in late October that set the bill’s overall spending level, which they think is too high. Democrats refused to accept a popular program to help low-income kids get a better education.” A spokesman for the House Appropriations Committee chaired by Hal Rogers, which helped negotiate the omnibus, says only that “as this was a compromise agreement, not all priorities could be retained.” Perhaps this reflects the imbalance of passion. Tax and spending decisions in the new year will follow what lawmakers call “regular order” – that is, working legislation through committee, not imposed from the top, with opportunities for members to amend measures on the floor.

Ryan, though he’s had some missteps in his first weeks as speaker, was adept at cementing the deal, which his predecessor, John Boehner, set in motion. But unlike past fiscal battles, when lawmakers took shots at GOP leaders and tried to tank bills, this time conservatives are largely holding their fire. That promise has given him credibility, at least for now, with the insurgent wing of the caucus that toppled Boehner. “I see an awful lot of our members who really want Ryan to succeed,” says Rep. Just so we’re clear, the far-right still hates the omnibus package, but the new Speaker appears to have held conservatives’ hands through the process, which they apparently appreciate – so much so that they’re not making much of an effort to kill the bill, and they’re not talking at all about deposing Ryan. Ryan question, House Republicans tend to split into two camps; those who say they trust Ryan more than Boehner, and those who are giving him the early benefit of the doubt.

Some of this is the result of successfully placating the members Boehner used to refer to as “knuckleheads.” Bloomberg Politics had a good piece on this earlier: With late-night texts to his members and an open-door policy for his most hard-to-please colleagues, Paul Ryan was determined to keep the usual Republican infighting from derailing his maiden government spending deal as U.S. Still, many conservatives said they would oppose a bill that doesn’t include GOP efforts to strip federal funding from Planned Parenthood or halt the admission of Syrian refugees in response to worries fueled by Islamic State attacks in Paris last month. “We were looking for ways to hold our nose and get to yes if they put in the Syrian issue” or antiabortion measures, said Rep. Jeanne Allen of the Center for Education Reform puts it this way: “Democrats oppose this program not because it is failing but because it is succeeding. Dave Brat (R) of Virginia, who defeated former House majority leader Eric Cantor in the 2014 GOP primary, calls the omnibus bill “a disaster.” “We’re breaking our pledge on the budget caps to the American people, we’ve lost fiscal discipline, and we’re throwing it all on the next generation,” he told Politico. They fear that as these choice programs succeed, poor and minority moms and dads are going to figure out the Democrats are selling their kids out to the teachers unions.” Now that Mr.

That has afforded Ryan a level of trust and credibility among the rank and file, which has allowed him to be more upfront in setting expectations about what can and cannot be achieved. The whole point of this, I want committees driving the process, I want committees writing the legislation, and that’s what happened here.” However, North Carolina Republican Rep. But Ryan predicted passage — a rare victory for reason over rage — this time. “I think everybody can point to something that gives them a reason to be in favor of both of these bills,” he said.

The result was that he was forced, at the beginning of each negotiation with President Obama, to promise his GOP troops that he would fight for their demands harder than ever before. Ezra Klein explained this morning explaining what is unavoidably true: The basic deal here is that Republicans get corporate tax cuts, Democrats get anti-poverty tax cuts, and both sides … get some Obamacare tax cuts. Suddenly, a $500 billion deficit looked like progress, then acceptable and even the new normal. “It started with the president declaring the problem solved when the deficits started coming down,” says Ms. This deal adds $700 billion onto the national tab, and maybe much more than that if the Obamacare taxes end up delayed far into the future, which is definitely what Republicans (and some Democrats) are hoping for. He’s been getting up and saying, ‘That’s not going to happen, and you know that’ on several occasions, and it’s been productive.” In an interview Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Harry M.

Pelosi, who said the backup plan would be voting simply to extend the government’s current funding without any of the bipartisan policy changes that lawmakers had crafted. Taken together, we’re looking at an omnibus intended to a make lot of members happy by spending more, cutting taxes more, and not worrying too much about “fiscal discipline” in an era in which President Obama has already shrunk the deficit by a $1 trillion. Some of these expiring tax breaks, such as the research and experimentation tax credit for small businesses, have been routinely extended for more than three decades. They say that the move to permanently extend tax breaks is not adding billions to the deficit because these measures represent current government spending. “It’s a much more honest way of doing the tallying,” says Rep. Recent terrorist attacks, dubbed a “new phase of terrorism” by President Obama, are registering with voters back home and with lawmakers across the political spectrum. “We’re faced with an existential threat from Islamic jihad and it becomes a bigger issue with the San Bernardino attacks and the Paris attacks,” says Rep.

John Fleming (R) of Louisiana, a member of the Congressional Tea Party Caucus, told the Daily Signal, a news website backed by the conservative Heritage Foundation. Adding more riders, such as stricter security protocols for Syrian and Iraqi refugees to the US, could have “peeled Freedom Caucus members to support the bill,” he said. Michael Mullen, then chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, during a tour of the Midwest in 2010. “The most significant threat to our national security is our debt,” Admiral Mullen said.

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