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thehill.com: Post-supercommittee, Senate Dems ready to move $400 billion in new bills


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Pick the ones you want to KEEP... Then justify why we need it:

Had to edit them down to fit in the poll.


After failing to reach a deal to reduce the deficit, the Senate will move next month to take up legislation that could add more than $400 billion to the deficit.

All of the proposals, such as the extension of the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance, are popular but come with no agreement on how to pay for them.

Senate Democrats will go on offense next week by forcing Republicans to vote on extending and expanding the payroll tax cut, which accounts for $240 billion of the tab, according to Democratic and Republican aides. Lawmakers will take up the legislation after completing work on the Defense authorization bill.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has yet to announce an offset for the measure, but he has discussed matching it with a tax increase for millionaires. Such a vote would be intended to hammer home the message that Republicans are out to protect the rich, though it leaves Democrats vulnerable to arguments about class warfare.

It is the opening maneuver in what will be a busy month that will likely keep lawmakers in Washington up until Christmas.

Democrats are contemplating a separate vote on extending unemployment benefits, which they do not plan to offset. This would put Republicans in the tough position of blocking popular benefits at a time when the unemployment rate is 9 percent.

Unlike with the deficit-reduction supercommittee, failing to complete the December agenda will have immediate consequences. Families would see their tax bill increase by an average of $1,000, laid-off workers would lose unemployment benefits, doctors would see steep cuts in Medicare payments and corporations would see billions of dollars in tax breaks vanish.

Both sides need to sacrifice a little bit to save us from another trillion in the next year.

It would be nice if the Bills weren't framed to fail before they even start though.

---------- Post added November-24th-2011 at 10:52 AM ----------

I voted for Unemployment, Its already TOO high and some should get cut, but that one needs better managment before you just cut people off. There are a ton of jobs for Target/Lowes/Walmart/etc.

The rest should expire or take huge cuts (not a smaller increase) (a cut).

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Observing that your poll doesn't have an option on the biggest item: Extending the 2% reduction in the employee's share of the payroll tax. Price tag $240B.

Me, I'm conflicted on all of them, but I'm not 100% certain that any of them are absolutely essential.

Letting the payroll tax go back up would mean an immediate 2% tax hike on almost every person who has a job. The POLITICAL effects of doing so would be GIGANTIC.

But, would the impact on the ECONOMY be a disaster? I'm not certain. It MIGHT be robust enough to handle it.

(Which then brings us to the question of whether "Well, it might not completely destroy the economy" is a gamble we want to make, right now.)

Keeping unemployment extended, same thing. I could see how cutting that off might not only be devastating for he folks who are depending on it, but might well have secondary effects, as well. For example, I wonder, if we cut off all those people, how big the resulting wave of foreclosures will be.

I think that cutting off employment might well do more damage to the economy than the tax hike. And he price tag is lower. So, I'll vote to keep it.

The "doctor fix"? NOBODY is going to let that happen. It's simply a tater of how much political theater wil accompany it.

But, the question in the thread is whether it SHOULD happen.

Based strictly on my personal experience, I can testify that my mom, whose on Medicare, has been seeing, for years, the kind-of rationing that's going on. She's on Medicare, and her doctor will see her. But, he doesn't have any appointments for her fir 2-3 months.

The doctor is willing to take what Medicare pays. But only for a certain number of slots, per day. And those slots are all full.

If Medicare pulls a "we've decided to pay less, take it or leave it", then it seems obvious to me that the doctor might not fat out decide not to take Medicare at all, but he might. And it's guaranteed that getting mom in to see him will become even tougher.

So, yeah, I think that the market says that no, we can't let that cut happen.

The AMT and the business credits? I don't have a good enough reason to keep them. But I'll admit that that might be a case of ignorance, rather than there not being such a reason.

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I'd like to see them all expire: During a good economy.

There has to be low hanging fruit we can fix before you cutoff those already cutoff.

Congress: this is why they got elected though. To make as much money as possible without making a single budgetary decision during their entire tenure.

---------- Post added November-25th-2011 at 05:50 PM ----------


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Hmmm. 66 views, two replies.

Everybody else waiting for their side to tell them what to think about the question?

Or perhaps there needs to be a "None of the above" option. :)

Also, it was nice to see someone call a spade a spade regarding rationing of care for Medicare patients. Back when we were debating the healthcare bill, many (not including Larry I don't think) refuted my assertion that healthcare rationing already goes on in the U.S...but I digress.

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Or perhaps there needs to be a "None of the above" option. :)

Also, it was nice to see someone call a spade a spade regarding rationing of care for Medicare patients. Back when we were debating the healthcare bill, many (not including Larry I don't think) refuted my assertion that healthcare rationing already goes on in the U.S...but I digress.

Of course rationing goes on.

That's because anything other than "free unlimited quantities for everybody" is "rationing".

We have gas rationing, right now. The price fluctuates until supply equals demand.

We also have rationing by private health insurers. Anybody in here honestly think that, say, Blue Cross DOESN'T lower the amount that they pay for things, until X% of the doctors in your area refuse to take that amount?

But THE WORD rationing only gets pulled out when the Right wants to demonize something.

It's just like the word "socialism". :)

---------- Post added November-26th-2011 at 10:59 AM ----------

Plans are not the administrations strong suite.

Oh, I don't know. They seem to be pretty good at plans. It's the IMPLIMENTING them that seems to get stuck.

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I didn't think anyone would wipe them all clean. though it would save us some money and get us a better rating, you can't just stop everything without a plan.

Plans are not the administrations strong suite.

This gets at the heart of what makes me hate the TP and the far right so much and why I've changed my mind to agree with cutting literally everything. In their simplistic view of the world everything has simple solutions and severe actions should be taken without regard to consideration of unintended consequences. So I say give them what they want and stand back and watch the carnage. The GOP would reap the harvest of allowing itself to be hijacked by extremists since most of those clamoring for cuts are the ones sucking up more tax revenue than they're paying anyway.

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We used to give people 13weeks of unemployment, pointing out quite a few waited till the last 4 weeks to start looking. It would be nice to have a vocational program the country needs going forward after 20weeks.

WIth mandatory attendance and graduation program at 80weeks with placement programs etc..

Bridges are falling down when they were more than adequately funded, lets get some structural engineers out on the streets like the Census Bureau.

Something to DO would be nice!

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Thiebear proposing *gasp* a new government program!! WTF?? Do you have a fever? Or have you been replaced with a bizarro world Thiebear? Somebody look in on him and let us know if he's got a new beard.

Do you agree or disagree with the premise that I would like to fix something we already have that "at least to my tiny brain" makes sense like a vocational program to help further those in temporary trouble.

How do you end a never ending program if there is no 'goal'.

Having just gotten back from Happy Feet 2 (one of the best movies i've seen in years) Goals are needed to get through the hard times.


GI Bill 2.0 positions veterans to fill vocational skills gap

A recent report from Harvard University suggests that there should be strong demand in coming years for individuals with postsecondary licenses or certificates. The report projects job growth in fields such as dental assisting, manufacturing, electrical installation and repair, and law enforcement.

While a college degree has traditionally been viewed as the path to prosperity, in a changing labor market, some vocational certifications can be just as lucrative, if not more so.

"In fact, 27 percent of people with post-secondary licenses or certificates--credentials short of an associate's degree--earn more than the average bachelor's degree recipient," the report stated.

good enough for the military, good enough for the unemployed.

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