Is the Gang Reading TMDR?
So, first it looked like House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was reading The Medicare Daily Report. Now, it looks like the "Gang of Six" has been reading us, too. Just yesterday, we covered the proposals of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. And today, many of those proposals are part of a bipartisan effort from the US Senate to get the budget and debt on track. Of course, they might not change the current talks, but if these proposals are serious, we may begin to make lasting progress.
"Out of nowhere, the Gang of Six's bipartisan plan for addressing the country's fiscal imbalance has returned from legislative hinterlands -- and has become the only viable, publicly available framework by which Congress can make good on its supposed desire for a grand bargain on deficit reduction. But according to an aide briefed on the Gang of Six's negotiations, the fledgling framework is still too new and incomplete to be included in a package to raise the debt limit before August 2nd -- and it's more likely to become the basis for a bigger-deal in the weeks and months ahead."
Meanwhile, President Obama praised the "Gang of Six Plan" and was "calling it a 'significant step' and arguing that members on both side of the aisle are beginning to coalesce around a balanced approach involving cuts to entitlements and tax increases." It looks like the plan is hitting both sides as "Republicans have taken issue with the Gang of Six proposals because it would raise $1 trillion in revenues over the coming decade, while Democratic leaders are skeptical for its cuts to entitlements programs including Medicare and Medicaid."
I guess this is "balance." Clearly, this framework has a long way to go in a very short time. Watch how it develops AFTER the debt deadline into a framework for a workable solution (hopefully). Here is the Gang Of Six Deficit Plan: Executive Summary. I'm sure that the broad strokes will be reviewed for policy and direction and the details, as they emerge, will be scrutinized. There will be plenty not to like.
Still Following the Old (GOP) Ways
Meanwhile, as we mentioned yesterday, "The House GOP will lay down its marker late Tuesday with a dead-on-arrival plan called Cut, Cap, and Balance. It has dim prospects in the Senate and President Obama has threatened to veto it." Why is this "plan" popular with Conservatives? Because "‘Cut, Cap, And Balance’ Plan Would Require A 25 Percent Cut In Every Government Program."
The extreme right wing ideology is strong and will be as long as we have substandard education and people more willing to follow than to think.