"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Obama’s New Plan: “A Big, Big Mess,” “Not A Recipe For Economic Or Job Growth”

September 19th, 2011 by mopns · No Comments

Speaking in the Rose Garden this morning, President Obama unveiled his new fiscal plan, but like his latest stimulus bill, it’s been met with mostly skepticism and criticism so far. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell summed it up: “Veto threats, a massive tax hike, phantom savings, and punting on entitlement reform is not a recipe for economic or job growth—or even meaningful deficit reduction. The good news is that the Joint Committee is taking this issue far more seriously than the White House.” Newsweek’s Jon Meacham was even more succinct, saying on MSNBC, “I just think it’s a big, big mess and the President has given up the chance now to lead effectively on this stuff . . . .”

News outlets previewed the speech by pointing out its decidedly political tint. Politico writes, “Suffering an erosion of support from the broad coalition that elected him, Obama has crafted a plan that reads more like a blueprint for shoring up his restless Democratic base than a vehicle for reaching across the aisle in search of bipartisan compromise.” The Washington Post notes, “Coming as a congressional super­committee goes to work to find budget savings this fall, Obama’s position will probably delight Democrats, who have fretted for months that he is doing too little to solve the nation’s jobs crisis while being too willing to embrace major changes to Medicare and Social Security. But his plan has little chance of passing and is already inflaming Republicans, who have vowed to oppose new taxes and have called for deep cuts in federal spending and entitlements.” And MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski mused this morning, “I think this is about the next election. Someone is going to have to explain to me why it’s not.”

On the substance, The Wall Street Journal writes, “Mr. Obama’s plan, which will be offered to the lawmakers charged with negotiating a deal by Nov. 23, will include roughly $1.5 trillion in tax increases primarily on wealthy Americans and corporations, people familiar with the proposal said. . . . The roughly $1.5 trillion in tax increases that Mr. Obama is expected to propose would include the expiration in 2013 of the Bush-era tax cuts for families making more than $250,000 a year. Mr. Obama will also include a set of tax increases he put forward last week to pay for his $447 billion jobs bill: limiting itemized deductions for families with taxable income of $250,000 or more a year, and ending tax breaks for oil companies, corporate-jet owners and investment-fund managers.” In another story, the WSJ observes, “President Barack Obama’s proposal to raise taxes on some millionaires will likely please members of his party, but it is unlikely to have much practical impact on federal deficits anytime soon.” And ABC’s Jonathan Karl pointed out yesterday, “It’s not new, by the way, he proposed a millionaires tax to finance healthcare and it went nowhere. This is not a new idea.”

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