House Republicans say they're offering $800 billion in new tax revenue through reform that doesn't increase rates, in addition to raising the Medicare eligibility age and other major changes. Here are the details.
All signs indicate that the current stalemate is no joke, leading to a flurry of predictions that we're headed over the cliff—and suggestions from the right that Republicans should just concede already on taxes.
President Obama has previously proposed $360 billion in health care cuts. They would mostly cut what the federal government spends on prescription drugs and care delivered in nursing homes and rehabilitative facilities.
Let's face it: Congress will probably kick the can down the road again. But that means they'll need a new set of punishments to push them to act in six months or a year. So what sort of fiscal cliff will they set up next time?
The GOP Speaker denies that his party has been unwavering on taxes, arguing that Republicans have repeatedly proven willing to generate billions in new revenue from tax reforms that don't raise tax rates.
A more sensible approach would deal directly with the problem at hand: the austerity crisis. And that could be defused fairly simply, without doing overly much to harm the deficit. The path would involve identifying policies that pack a big stimulus punch without significantly increasing the deficit. Such “mismatched” policies abound.
Forget going over the fiscal cliff for a few weeks. What if we go over and stay over? Macroeconomic Advisers took a look, and they found that a perma-cliff scenario would lead to budget surpluses, but at the cost of lower growth and higher unemployment.
They're hoping that "comprehensive tax reform" will be part of the grand bargain, paving the way for eliminating taxes on corporate profits overseas. But some tax experts warn the reform could be a huge revenue-loser.
The problem in the austerity crisis talks isn't that Democrats are refusing the GOP's proposed Medicare cuts. It's that Republicans are refusing to name their Medicare cuts. And that's because they genuinely don't know what they want to do on Medicare.