It’ll be interesting to see how much left-wing opposition to Chained CPI (which a non-elected liberal voice like Paul Krugman flatly decried as “purely and simply, a benefit cut”) manifests itself when President Obama’s budget comes out next week. Clearly Senator Sanders doesn’t fear going on the record, but he is, after all, a self-avowed socialist from Vermont. The broader reaction to this from the President’s own party will go a long way towards revealing whether the traditional Democratic coalition still holds, or whether it’s now simply an Obama coalition.
He Said What?!: With the threat continuing to loom over Washington, new reports suggest that President Obama and Speaker Boehner might be making some headway in their “fiscal cliff” negotiations. President Obama has allegedly agreed to consider conceding on Social Security cost-of-living increases in exchange for Speaker Boehner’s acceptance of tax hikes on the wealthiest Americans. If true, this might be the biggest compromise that either has made since taking office, though we suspect that neither will receive much support from their base. (Photo via US Department of Labor)source
65%of votersbelieve that President Obama has a mandate to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans after being reelected last month. That includes 45 percent of the Republicans surveyed as well.
64%of voters believe that President Obama also has a mandate to protect programs like Medicare and Social Security during his next term. Considering Senate Republicans are now relying on filibusters of their own proposals related to the “fiscal cliff,” something tells us that Speaker Boehner was probably correct in telling House Republicans not to make holiday plans this year. source
[Mitt] Romney might believe in slightly less redistribution than President Obama does, but the idea that he doesn’t believe in redistribution is belied by every single thing he has ever said he will do as president, and for that matter, by everything he ever did as governor of Massachusetts.
Ezra Klein. Two days ago, Romney told Fox News that ”the president said yes, he believes in redistribution. I don’t.” Klein notes that despite this, Romney’s website proclaims his belief in “a progressive tax code, the Medicare program, the Medicaid program, the food stamp program, the Social Security program and pretty much every other feature of the federal government that’s involved in redistributing income.” source
poetfire asks: So then. At the same time social security recipients are receiving a 3+% increase, Congress is debating over whether to keep social security cointributions ["payroll tax] articicially low. It is as if they are intentionally bankrupting the SS trust fund.
» SFB says: You can look at it that way … but, maybe this is just us talking: Perhaps they realize it’s a recession and that the economy needs a jump start. They can raise it when the economy is robust again. Not that you don’t have a point, but the logic seems sound to us. — Ernie @ SFB
$2.2trillion in cuts offered by super committee GOP source
» Cut spending, or do a little of everything? The above figure is, in fact, about $800 billion less than the deficit reduction the Democratic plan would have achieved, which relied on a nearly even mixture of spending cuts and tax increases (including some politically tough cuts to Medicare). The GOP plan, conversely, offers no such tax increases, instead relying on heavier spending cuts to Medicare, Social Security, and low-income welfare programs such as food stamps, along with lowering tax rates which they’re claiming will stoke hundreds of billions of extra economic activity. So, basically, the same argument is playing out exactly like it does every time, though now there’s only twelve people instead of a full Congress.
Perry begins his response to a question about Social Security by assuring seniors that they’ll be fine; clearly, he’s thinking about the Florida primary, and the abundance of seniors who’ll be voting in it.
“Slam dunk guaranteed” that seniors already on Social Security will be able to rely on that money, says Perry. He’s once again doubling-down on the “Ponzi scheme” line.
Rick Santorum wins this entire thing entirely, in terms of sticking up for himself - Why are the candidates allowing Wolf Blitzer to ask them whether they’re in the Mitt camp or the Perry camp? It’s sidelining them in terms of their own plans and principles. It was quite refreshing to hear Santorum derail the entire premise of the conversation.
Absolutely. Santorum got a huge applause when he rejected the Romney-Perry dichotomy, and then Wolf Blitzer moved on to another question.
Mitt Romney is drawing a distinction between criticizing the financing and structure of Social Security, and the questioning the constitutionality of its existence. He’s also directly asking Perry whether he thinks Social Security should be phased out. Hardball!