Speaker Boehner's Debt Ceiling Agreement Presentation

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  • Hi Brian, I obviously don't represent the President or the Democratic Party just myself. Why was I upset today? Here's why - instead of handling budgetary matters the way every other Congress in the history of our nation has chosen to do - some leaders in this Congress chose to place the United States on the brink of default and bankruptcy in order to further their political agenda. They played chicken with our futures - our money in the stock market, in pensions our jobs our home values - all of it could have been wiped out very near term had this gone even one day further. So now all sides have closed ranks on their talking points - that doesn't change what just happened and how close we came to disaster.
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  • I think this deal is a very good start on getting our fiscal house in order. For instance:

    This deal removes the cloud of uncertainty over our economy at this critical time, by ensuring that no one will be able to use the threat of the nation’s first default. The deal includes caps on discretionary spending that will produce more than $900 billion in savings over the next 10 years compared to the CBO March baseline, even as it protects core investments from deep and economically damaging cuts. The deal puts us on track to cut $350 billion from the defense budget over 10 years.

    This deal reduces non-defense discretionary spending to its lowest level since Dwight Eisenhower was President. The deal creates a bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Committee that is charged with enacting $1.5 trillion in additional deficit reduction by the end of the year. This Committee will work without the looming specter of default, ensuring time to carefully consider essential reforms. Any recommendation of the Committee would be given fast-track privilege in the House and Senate, assuring it of an up or down vote and preventing some from using procedural gimmicks to block action.

    This deal does not include proposals that would have placed the sole burden of deficit reduction on lower-income and middle-class families. The enforcement mechanism in the deal exempts Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare benefits, unemployment insurance, programs for low-income families, and civilian and military retirement.

    Source: White House (http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/economy/debt-debate)

    <br /><iframe width="350" height="288" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Zm4k73OukzM?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe>
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  • Recommendations for debt reduction. Before I share them I have to add that debt reduction is not the problem we're facing anyway. It is a false crisis designed to facilitate an entire slate of unrelated policy - the real crisis we're facing is continuing unemployment, housing devaluation and slow or negative GDP growth (both the 1st and 2nd quarter growth estimates have been revised downward to almost nothing). We are on the verge of a double dip Recession and toying with economic stability in that environment is criminally negligent. Recommendations; 1 - immediate withdrawal from Afghanistan. 2 - Conduct a debt audit to determine how much of the interest we're paying is accurate, 3 - increase revenues. About point 3 - every accountant and every person who has to balance a checkbook knows that if you continue to reduce your income you will likely fall short on current commitments. We've reduced our income radically and made pledges not to increase it. Furthermore, if we head into another downturn no amount of cuts will make up for the added lost revenue we will encounter - it becomes a death spiral - this BTW is happening in Greece right now.
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  • Baseline budgeting is probably one component of the problem. I'd be interested in hearing your proposal for reducing the nations debt...
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  • It is US policy not to negotiate with extortionists. I wholeheartedly agree with the principle. A group of elected leaders chose to threaten both the United States and the World with economic collapse which would result from our credit default if they didn't get their way - other leaders gave in to that blackmail. While I am disappointed with those who gave in to the blackmail - my main disgust is directed towards the group of hyper-partisans who put their interests above the nation. First they demanded a trillion dollars in December or they'd shut down the government, now this. What's next? This is what happens when you continuously appease people who believe extortion is a legitimate political tool.
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Speaker Boehner's Debt Ceiling Agreement Presentation

  1. TWO-STEP APPROACH TO HOLD PRESIDENT OBAMA ACCOUNTABLEEmerging framework has three main features:(1)   cuts government spending more than it increases the debt limit;(2)   implements spending caps to restrain future spending;(3)   advances the cause of a Balanced Budget AmendmentFramework accomplishes this without tax hikes, which woulddestroy jobs, while preventing a job-killing national default. SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  2. NO TAX HIKES‣ Same as House-passed bill, the framework includes no tax hikes.‣ Requires baseline to be current law, effectively making it impossible for Joint Committee to increase taxes. SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  3. CUTS THAT EXCEED THE DEBT HIKE‣ Same as House-passed bill, framework includes spending cuts that exceed the amount of the increased debt authority granted to POTUS.‣ Would cut & cap discretionary spending immediately, saving $917B over 10 years (certified by CBO) & raise the debt ceiling by less – $900B – to approximately February. ‣ Before debt ceiling can be raised, Congress and the president must enact spending cuts of a larger amount first. SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  4. CAPS TO CONTROL FUTURE SPENDING‣ As in House-passed bill, framework imposes spending caps that would set clear limits on future spending & serve as barrier against gov’t expansion while economy grows. ‣ Failure to remain below these caps triggers automatic across- the-board cuts (“sequestration”).  Same mechanism used in 1997 Balanced Budget Agreement. SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  5. BALANCED BUDGET AMENDMENT‣ Same as House-passed bill, framework requires both House & Senate to vote on a BBA after Oct. 1, 2011 but before the end of year.‣ Similar to House-passed bill, framework authorizes POTUS to request second tranche of debt limit increase of $1.5T if: ‣ Joint Committee cuts spending by greater amount than the requested debt limit hike, OR ‣ A Balanced Budget Amendment is sent to the states.‣ Creates incentive for previous opponents of a BBA to now support it.  SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  6. ENTITLEMENT REFORMS & SAVINGS ‣ Same as House-passed bill, framework creates a 12-member Joint Committee required to report legislation by November 23, 2011 that would produce a proposal to reduce the deficit by at least $1.5T over 10 years.‣ Each chamber would consider Joint Committee proposal on an up-or-down basis without any amendments by December 23, 2011. ‣ If Joint Committee’s proposal is enacted OR if a Balanced Budget Amendment is sent to the states, POTUS would be authorized to request a debt limit increase of $1.5T.  SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER
  7. ENTITLEMENT REFORMS & SAVINGS ‣ Sets up a new sequestration process to cut spending across-the-board – and ensure that any debt limit increase is met with greater spending cuts – IF Joint Committee fails to achieve at least $1.2T in deficit reduction. ‣ If this happens, POTUS may request up to $1.2T for a debt limit increase, and if granted, then across-the- board spending cuts would result that would equal the difference between $1.2T and the deficit reduction enacted as a result of Joint Committee. ‣ Across-the-board spending cuts would apply to FYs 2013-2021, and apply to both mandatory & discretionary programs. ‣ Total reductions would be equally split between defense and non-defense programs.  Across-the-board cuts would also apply to Medicare.  Other programs, including Social Security, Medicaid, veterans, and civil & military pay, would be exempt.‣ Sequestration process is designed to guarantee that Congress acts on the Joint Committee’s legislation to cut spending. SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER

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