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While Government Remains Shut Down, Republicans Propose Another Committee — And One That’s Not Supposed to Discuss Revenues

October 8, 2013

Critical government services have been shut down for over a week, federal employees and contractors are going without pay, and the nation is fast approaching a potentially catastrophic default on its obligations.  But instead of addressing these problems, the House Republican leadership now wants to appoint a committee (termed a “working group”) to recommend ways of reducing the deficit —...

History Isn’t Repeating Itself — This Shutdown Is Different

October 8, 2013

Former Reagan Administration official Joseph Morris argues that there’s nothing unusual about policymakers using a government shutdown to work out policy differences.  In an October 2 Washington Post column, he claims the Reagan years prove it and,...

“Emerging” House Republican Offer Could Spell More Trouble on Shutdown, Default

October 7, 2013

The nation may be in for more trouble on the government shutdown and debt limit than many commentators realize — if Robert Costa’s recent National Review piece accurately reflects House Republicans’ thinking on their next steps.  In “The Emerging Offer,” Costa describes the “offer” that House...

Don’t Reward the Politics of Blackmail, or We’ll See More Shutdowns

October 1, 2013

More than the fate of health reform (and whether millions of uninsured Americans get health coverage) is at stake in the battle over the government shutdown.  How well — or poorly — our democracy functions is increasingly on the line.

The shutdown battle is not over the funding levels at which the government will operate under a continuing resolution (CR) for fiscal year 2014...

Don’t Be Fooled: This Year’s Debt Limit Fight Is Frighteningly Different

September 20, 2013

Update, September 26: Although described as a “debt prioritization” measure, the provision in the continuing resolution that the House approved on September 20 really isn’t.  It would actually allow the Treasury to borrow funds that would not count toward the debt limit to pay interest and Social Security benefits.  While that would still leave the Treasury short of funds to pay other...

Setting the Record Straight on SNAP, Part 8: Hill Article Gets It Way Wrong on House SNAP Cuts

September 18, 2013

A recent article in The Hill on the House Republican SNAP (food stamp) bill that faces a floor vote this week (“GOP to push bill restoring work requirements for food stamps,” Sept. 12) is riddled with serious errors.  All of them help to portray the House GOP proposal positively — which may not be surprising, since the article quotes only House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and a Cantor...

Setting the Record Straight on SNAP, Part 6: Eric Cantor Is Misrepresenting the House SNAP Cuts

September 16, 2013

In announcing that the House will vote this week on legislation to cut SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) by $40 billion over ten years, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said the following:

“No law-abiding beneficiary who meets the income and asset tests of the current program and is willing to comply with applicable work requirements will lose their benefits under the bill.”

...

Mr. Kristol, Mr. Capretta — Heads Up on Health Reform’s Employer Requirement

July 16, 2013

In recent days, critics of health reform’s requirement that large employers offer health coverage or pay a penalty have repeatedly and inaccurately cited an October 2009 CBPP paper to support their contention that it will discourage firms from hiring low-income workers.  This is sloppy work on their part.  As CBPP Senior...

House Strips SNAP From Farm Bill in Unprecedented Move

July 11, 2013

7/12/13 Note:  We have updated this post to reflect legislative action.

For several decades, legislation to reauthorize farm programs and SNAP (formerly known as the Food Stamp Program) have moved together.  Now, the House Republican leadership has split the bills, passing a stand-alone farm bill now and planning to move a separate...

“Blank Slate” Approach to Tax Reform Leaves Biggest Question Unanswered

June 28, 2013

Yesterday’s call from Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and ranking Republican Orrin Hatch to initiate tax reform with a “blank slate” that doesn’t include any of the deductions, credits, exclusions, and other tax breaks collectively known as “tax expenditures” leaves a critical question unresolved:  what will policymakers do with the proceeds from narrowing or eliminating tax...

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