Fiscal conservatives around Obama have sold the president on the idea that nipping and tucking Social Security and Medicare is an easy way to get a lot of money, and doing it by the backdoor will entail a lower political cost to him. So far, he seems to have been proven wrong on all three assumptions. The Republicans haven't given an inch, the $270 billion in cuts undertaken so far this year under the January budget deal and the March sequester have cut the growth rate in half, and he is alienating core Democratic constituencies. One unanticipated benefit of Obama's stance is new, explicit pressure on Democratic House and Senate members, as well as candidates considering running for president in 2016, to pledge not to cut Social Security and Medicare. It would be so much better if this Democratic president were behaving as a progressive leader right now.
Did the White House just hand an excuse to anti-Obamacare state officials to punt on the law's Medicaid expansion? As states continue to wrestle with...
A greater tax deduction for students is not a handout. On the contrary, it helps those who are willing to meet the challenges of higher education to invest in our collective future.
This well-meaning program is a serious mistake for two reasons. First, it is no more than a politically correct, cosmetic solution that distracts attention from what really needs to be done. Second, it will likely wind up doing much more harm than good.
Far from being an impossible set of demands, the collective opinion poll version of the wisdom of the American people is, in fact, a smart set of solutions -- or at least it would be, if we had a government capable of following our wishes.
His plan includes boosts to some health and development programs, and overall higher funding levels for foreign assistance than what Congress has put forward. But his funding recommendation is still a decrease from previous years, and specific cuts are cause for concern.
In this video, Yvette Carnell of Your Black World discusses Obama's budget proposal, which includes a plan to cut Social Security and Medicare, with me.
Buried in the $3.8 trillion budget President Barack Obama sent to Congress Wednesday is a small item of potentially big significance. The White House ...
Of all the ideas to increase government spending or reduce the deficit, doing so on the backs of charities has to be one of the worst.
The government wants to limit how much money you can save in a tax-deferred retirement account, saying too many people are taking tax deductions for saving more money than they are likely to need.
The best way to sway members of Congress is to endanger their seats if they aren't willing to do the right thing. In the real world, politics isn't about playing cat and mouse. It's about power.
We are told that Obama's budget will trade "modest entitlement savings" for immediate tax hikes on the corporate rich. If that is so, the trade that will be proposed tomorrow will reflect poor judgment -- poor moral judgment, poor economic judgment and poor political judgment.
Barack Obama decisively defeated Republicans in the 2012 election. But Republicans are successfully kicking his butt in the post election.
How is it that in the last few days I've seen ten articles from all the major newspapers, all of which scream that Obama's calling for cuts in Social Security and Medicare -- then go on to say nothing useful about Social Security, and absolutely nothing at all about Medicare?
The Republican bargaining habit is well-established -- take Obama's "final" offer as the new starting point and demand further concessions. With this strategy, our president has let them take him to the cleaners for more than four years now, and is still hoping that sweet reasonableness will produce compromise. It never has and never will. If Democrats stand for anything, it is defense of Social Security and Medicare -- America's two most broadly beneficial and most beloved government programs -- and the president just gave away this last bit of product differentiation. In the past, Republicans have saved Obama from himself by refusing to consider any tax hikes. Now, I'm beginning to think, it's time for Democrats save him from himself. And the Democratic Party. And us.
On Tuesday, President Obama announced a federal effort to map the human brain in unprecedented detail. With any luck, it might help explain the kind of loopy thinking we saw demonstrated at the end of the week. On the one hand, we had the latest jobs report, which showed a country still in crisis, with the addition of only 88,000 new jobs, and the share of the population in the workforce falling to the lowest point in decades. Yet the leaked details of the president's new budget show a focus not on job creation but on cutting the deficit by $1.8 trillion over the next 10 years (in addition to cutting Social Security benefits). So amidst hard evidence of our profound and continuing economic crisis, we get a budget offering a solution to a different (and far less pressing) problem. It's enough to set what Obama called "the three pounds of matter that sits between our ears" spinning.