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Gang of Six, back from the brink?
Politico ^ | 07/09/11 | Manu Raju

Posted on 07/19/2011 11:10:16 AM PDT by freespirited

 

The once moribund Senate “Gang of Six” regained new life Tuesday after Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn unexpectedly rejoined the group — and more senators are now coalescing around a new proposal that would cut the debt by as much as $3.7 trillion over the next decade.

Other top senators are also getting behind the plan, including Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the No. 3 Senate Republican, who told a group of senators Tuesday he would back the Gang of Six’s proposal, sources say. The fast-moving developments mean that elements of the proposal could influence the stalled talks to raise the debt-limit before the Aug. 2 deadline.

According to a copy of the plan, obtained by POLITICO, the group would impose a two-step legislative process that would make $500 billion worth of cuts immediately followed by a second bill to create a “fast-track process” that would propose a comprehensive bill aimed at dramatically restructuring tax and spending programs. The plan calls for changes to Social Security to move on a separate track, and establishes an elaborate procedure for considering the measures on the floor.

The $500 billion in cuts would come from a range of sources, including shifting to a new consumer price index to make cost-of-living adjustments to Social Security. The plan would impose statutory spending caps through 2015, freeze congressional pay and sell unused federal property.

To enact a comprehensive deficit plan, the group calls for congressional committees to report legislation within six months that would “deliver real deficit savings in entitlement programs over 10 years,” the plan says.

It calls on the Finance Committee to permanently reform or replace Medicare’s Sustainable Growth Rate - an outdated formula aimed at determining the amount to reimburse doctors for treating Medicare patients - by $298 billion.

The Finance Committee would be instructed to deliver “real deficit savings” through simplifying the tax code and raise as much as $1 trillion. It would do this by establishing three tax brackets with rates of 8-12 percent, 14-22 percent and 23-29 percent. It would permanently repeal the $1.7 trillion Alternative Minimum Tax. And it calls for establishing a single corporate tax rate, between 23 percent and 29 percent, and to move to a competitive territorial tax system.

Overall, the group claims it would result in a $1.5 trillion net tax decrease.

The group punts many of the specifics to other committees, which would be asked to find savings in discretionary and mandatory spending. This includes: $80 billion out of Armed Services; $70 billion out of Health, Education, Labor and Pensions; $65 billion out of Homeland Security and Government Affairs; $11 billion out of Agriculture; $11 billion out of Commerce; $6 billion out of Energy and Natural Resources. The Judiciary Committee would be asked to find savings through medical malpractice reform.

The group spent ample time proposing ways to expedite the legislative process should there be a stalemate in committee.

If any committee cannot propose cuts, it would would impose “across-the-board” cuts to programs under the panel’s jurisdiction. It would exempt programs aimed at low-income communities.

To avoid gridlock, floor amendments that upset the deficit-reduction goals would be ruled out of order. Any bill that could receive 60 votes would be held at the desk until the Senate considers the separate Social Security bill.

Once a comprehensive deficit plan has the votes, a measure aimed at ensuring 75-years of solvency of Social Security would head to the floor. The Finance Committee would be required to recommend the Social Security changes.

Senators in the Gang of Six - Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and Coburn - discussed the proposal with 43 senators Tuesday morning on the first floor of the Senate, after more than six months of struggling to broker a deal.

Coburn left the group in May but suddenly rejoined after the group added $115 billion in additional health care cuts and included the provision allowing senators to circumvent the stalled committees.

“I’m back,” Coburn told the big group Tuesday, prompting a round of applause.



TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: coburn; conrad; crapo; debt; debtceiling; durbin; lamar; taxrates; warner
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Prepare for a final bill next week.
1 posted on 07/19/2011 11:10:26 AM PDT by freespirited
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To: freespirited

If the Republicans in the House and Senate vote for this, I will NEVER vote for a Republican again.

We need a third party if this crap happens.

It’s going to raise taxes on me and other productive people to fund the waste. NO.


2 posted on 07/19/2011 11:12:46 AM PDT by LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
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To: freespirited
Since the Constitution prohibits appropriations for a period longer than 2 years these ten year plans are ALL BULL DROPPINGS ~ totally useless.

Senators should by now have figured out that we are not fooled, nor amused, by this sort of shallow and transparent chicanery.

3 posted on 07/19/2011 11:13:35 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: freespirited

“more senators are now coalescing around a new proposal that would cut the debt by as much as $3.7 trillion over the next decade.”

...and against the American people.

Hey, I thought is was $4 Trillion. And big whoop anyway. Less than a trillion a year over the next ten - when all bets are off in 2012/13

This is crap political posturing. Time to burn the phones again. Congress must crush this “deal”

CC&B or NOTHING! let’s cut 45% in government spending. Take that to the voters. Big win!


4 posted on 07/19/2011 11:14:39 AM PDT by wilco200 (11/4/08 - The Day America Jumped the Shark)
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To: freespirited

Coburn, Crapo and Chambliss, TAX RAISERS and corrupt criminals of the worst sort.


5 posted on 07/19/2011 11:14:52 AM PDT by LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
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To: wilco200

Obama supports it.

Republicans stick a dagger in the stomachs of productive Americans if they vote for this.


6 posted on 07/19/2011 11:16:00 AM PDT by LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
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To: muawiyah

The simple truth is they don’t care what we think.

Wasn’t it Coburn who said Pelosi is a nice person?

No republican will ever get my vote unless he or she is a true conservative.


7 posted on 07/19/2011 11:16:05 AM PDT by Terry Mross (I'll only vote for a SECOND party.)
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To: freespirited
That's great, Coburn, Crapola and Alexander...raise taxes on the ONE group that already pays the most taxes! Way to spur the economy...not.

Fools, all.

8 posted on 07/19/2011 11:16:20 AM PDT by Jane Long (2 Chron 7:14)
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To: muawiyah
Senators should by now have figured out that we are not fooled, nor amused, by this sort of shallow and transparent chicanery.

Many of the senators are part of the chicanery.

9 posted on 07/19/2011 11:16:20 AM PDT by EGPWS (Trust in God, question everyone else)
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To: freespirited

"Senators in the Gang of Six - Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and Coburn.....psssst must be Odumbo's accountant, there's only 5 there"

10 posted on 07/19/2011 11:18:28 AM PDT by Doogle ((USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: Jane Long

I’m back,” Coburn told the big group Tuesday, prompting a round of applause
Another great example of stealing defeat from the jaws of victory. When will people learn that socialists lie, little Dick Durben will not deliver and blame all things on us. Just wow.


11 posted on 07/19/2011 11:18:50 AM PDT by crosslink (Moderates should play in the middle of a busy street)
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To: EGPWS

They are also senile. Some of them need an attendant to help them urinate standing at one of those horsetroughs in a roadside Wisconsin beer joint out in the country.


12 posted on 07/19/2011 11:18:58 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Jane Long

Alexander is a Tennessee RINO from the old school of Howard Baker...Crapo is supposed to be conservative cause he’s from Idaho and of course Coburn has a conservative reputation ever greater than that.

But look what they are doing........


13 posted on 07/19/2011 11:19:15 AM PDT by Nextrush (President Sarah Palin sounds just right to me)
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To: muawiyah

I thought Obama and the dems #1 economic policy was to let the Bush tax cuts expire and raise them on the “rich” to 39.6%. Now they’re going to lower them to 29% or less? I must be missing something. There must be something else, a catch of sorts.

The dems would never be able to go after Republicans on taxes again. They’d be cutting them for the “rich” even more than Bush did. It would pretty much be going back on their entire ideology.


14 posted on 07/19/2011 11:21:30 AM PDT by jeltz25
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity

Not enough info here for me to determine impact on my household’s taxes. It would get rid of the AMT and lower corporate tax rates, that much is good.

Guess they’ll have to pass it so we can find out what’s in it.


15 posted on 07/19/2011 11:21:45 AM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: freespirited

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2750814/posts Dumbo likes it, the amount of money over a ten year period won’t cover the interest alone.....and of course it means no more wasteful spending right?


16 posted on 07/19/2011 11:23:54 AM PDT by Doogle ((USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity

I’m confused at the moment. Coburn just yesterday announced his NINE TRILLION DOLLAR CUT plan. Coburn isn’t done at three trillion by any means. So, what’s up?


17 posted on 07/19/2011 11:23:59 AM PDT by RitaOK (We hang together or will hang separately. 2012, or bust)
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity

I think the GOP should not have politicized the debt ceiling because our US debt situation linked to Wall Street is so screwed up, it is basically too big to disrupt without taking down the entire US financial system. Tea Party have the right concept but they do not have an inkling on how late it is for the US to reform. IMHO the Tea Party should stop placing faith in the political system and prepare their own family for the impending collapse of US dollar and hyperinflation. IN OTHER WORDS IT IS ALREADY TOO LATE TO DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT. If the GOP wins the election in 2012, tax cuts will not restart the economy because the very large debts and liabilities are still on corporate balance sheets or transferred to federal gov as part of the bailout deal. Until those debts disappear or paid off by debtors, the US economy will remain stagnate. Japanese economist call it the “balance sheet depression”. If GOP chose austerity the US voters will vote them out in 2016. If the Dems choose spend and tax the voters will throw them out in 2016. As a bank critic and expert Chris Whalen pointed out in his analysis the US faces a fiscal and cultural crisis. The average American is not ready to accept the necessary austerity to pay off our debts (tax increases and/or spending cuts). So what is left is political paralysis, cultural denial and the debt will increase and ultimately implode the nation. Rising from the chaos will be the end of democracy and rise of a US dictatorship. IMHO it is already too late for political action, and what is left for individuals to do is prepare their families and have some extra set aside to take care of other family members who did not listen and prepare. After that, everyone else is on their own when it comes to trying to buy food, obtain guns and other vitals in a hyperinflation dollar collapse or currency reset.


18 posted on 07/19/2011 11:28:28 AM PDT by Fee
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To: freespirited
It would exempt programs aimed at low-income communities.

Now there's a rigid standard.

19 posted on 07/19/2011 11:30:16 AM PDT by Aevery_Freeman (White Hetero Able Male (WHAM) a.k.a. NOT Holder's people)
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To: freespirited

How dare they.


20 posted on 07/19/2011 11:31:34 AM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
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To: Fee

Bingo! Great post.


21 posted on 07/19/2011 11:32:22 AM PDT by sam_paine (X .................................)
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To: RitaOK

Sounds like wishful thinking ... until we have a GOP Senate and WH.


22 posted on 07/19/2011 11:34:02 AM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: freespirited

“deliver real deficit savings in entitlement programs over 10 years”

Why, praytell, are we supposed to believe this?


23 posted on 07/19/2011 11:35:47 AM PDT by Tublecane
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To: freespirited

Gee. $3.7T. Where have we heard that number before?

The 2012 0bama budget proposal that was rejected unanimously:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/budget.pdf

0bama’s $3,800,000,000,000 budget request:

“The complexity of (his) budget make the numbers difficult to verify.”

“Overall, the debt would grow under his plan from just over $14 trillion now to nearly $21 trillion in five years.”

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/feb/14/obama-unveils-37-trillion-budget-blueprint/


24 posted on 07/19/2011 11:35:57 AM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
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To: freespirited

“deliver real deficit savings in entitlement programs over 10 years”

Why, praytell, are we supposed to believe this? And why 10 years? It’ll give us tax hikes right away, no doubt. I’ll never understand, outside of vote-grabbing, why cuts can’t come right away, too. Then again, I really don’t need any alternative explanation than vote-grabbing.


25 posted on 07/19/2011 11:38:19 AM PDT by Tublecane
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To: freespirited
So, instead of going a further $17 trillion into debt in the next 10 years, we'll only go $13.3 trillion more?

If we send it, they will spend it.

26 posted on 07/19/2011 11:40:59 AM PDT by anoldafvet (18 months until we're rid of "The Boy Blunder".)
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To: Nextrush
They are worse than just progressives... they are all cowards... they do this out of fear and Rush and several others... including sitiing Congressmen... stated that fear has paralyzed these people. clinton stated today that he would just ignore the ceiling and do whatever he wanted to do... and that is the America these cowards have wrought upon us.

LLS

27 posted on 07/19/2011 11:42:36 AM PDT by LibLieSlayer ("GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH"! I choose LIBERTY and PALIN!)
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To: jeltz25

“The dems would never be able to go after Republicans on taxes again. They’d be cutting them for the “rich” even more than Bush did. It would pretty much be going back on their entire ideology.”

What are you talking about? No amount of facts can dislodge Dems as the party of “the little guy” and Pubs as lackies of Big Business Fat Cats. No matter how much Wall Street money fills Obama’s coffers, no matter how progressive Pubs make their tax rates, no matter how much raising taxes hurts the lowly Forgotten Man, nothing will change.


28 posted on 07/19/2011 11:43:39 AM PDT by Tublecane
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To: freespirited

Politico covers this ‘DarkHorse’ lovefest but ignores ‘Fast and Furious’.


29 posted on 07/19/2011 11:43:55 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed .. Monthly Donor Onboard .. Obama: Epic Fail or Bust!!!)
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To: jeltz25
Yes there is. They will be lowering mortgage deductions,charitable contributions,health care contributions
and 401K tax savings. So they will lower the rates but they will make it up on the back end. Also the tax rates touted in the Gang of Six plan has 3 rates but there is variation in each bracket so you can bet alot of people will be shifted up to the higher end rates

“Simplify the tax code by reducing the number of tax expenditures and reducing individual
tax rates, by establishing three tax brackets with rates of 8–12 percent, 14–22 percent,and 23–29 percent.”

30 posted on 07/19/2011 11:46:00 AM PDT by funfan
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To: jeltz25
Yes there is. They will be lowering mortgage deductions,charitable contributions,health care contributions
and 401K tax savings. So they will lower the rates but they will make it up on the back end. Also the tax rates touted in the Gang of Six plan has 3 rates but there is variation in each bracket so you can bet alot of people will be shifted up to the higher end rates

“Simplify the tax code by reducing the number of tax expenditures and reducing individual
tax rates, by establishing three tax brackets with rates of 8–12 percent, 14–22 percent,and 23–29 percent.”

31 posted on 07/19/2011 11:46:10 AM PDT by funfan
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To: jeltz25
Yes there is. They will be lowering mortgage deductions,charitable contributions,health care contributions
and 401K tax savings. So they will lower the rates but they will make it up on the back end. Also the tax rates touted in the Gang of Six plan has 3 rates but there is variation in each bracket so you can bet alot of people will be shifted up to the higher end rates

“Simplify the tax code by reducing the number of tax expenditures and reducing individual
tax rates, by establishing three tax brackets with rates of 8–12 percent, 14–22 percent,and 23–29 percent.”

32 posted on 07/19/2011 11:46:22 AM PDT by funfan
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To: anoldafvet

“So, instead of going a further $17 trillion into debt in the next 10 years, we’ll only go $13.3 trillion more?”

No, like always, they’ll see the $3+ trillion, if it actually comes to pass, as a cushion for criticism of the perpetual motion machine that is the U.S. budget. In fact, they’ll see it as their duty to spend even more than they were otherwise going to to make up for the cuts. That’s how it works. And you can’t say anything about it, cause, hey, they gave you your cuts, you greedy Fat Cat.

“Hold on there, pal. What are you complaining about? I know debt is bigger than annual GDP, but we cut out $3 trillion, so you have nothing more to say to us.”


33 posted on 07/19/2011 11:52:17 AM PDT by Tublecane
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To: freespirited

“including shifting to a new consumer price index to make cost-of-living adjustments to Social Security. “

I’ve read this can cut SS payments by as much as $700 per month. If so, R’s will get the blame on this, and it will sink the R party for decades to come.

The Dems and the media will posture it as if the R’s shifted money from the “lockbox” to kill Granny for the rich.

I don’t expect I will ever see SS. I never expected to really “retire” in any sense of the word either, but there are going to be a ton of folks already on fixed income, who have given everything to this nation, who are going to be hurt like no tomorrow.


34 posted on 07/19/2011 11:54:28 AM PDT by esoxmagnum (The rats have been trained to pull the D voting lever to get their little food pellet)
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To: anoldafvet
So, instead of going a further $17 trillion into debt in the next 10 years, we'll only go $13.3 trillion more?

If I understand correctly, yes, something like that.

35 posted on 07/19/2011 12:00:09 PM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: esoxmagnum
I’ve read this can cut SS payments by as much as $700 per month.

Do you recall where you read that? My understanding is that it affects only the cost of living increase. For example if the increase would be 3% under the current method of calculation, it might be reduced to 2.2% under the new one. That will lower benefits, but hardly by 700 bucks a month.

36 posted on 07/19/2011 12:02:42 PM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: RitaOK

I don’t get it either. How can Coburn expect anyone to take his plan if he’s so quick to jump ship?


37 posted on 07/19/2011 12:07:37 PM PDT by FourPeas ("Maladjusted and wigging out is no way to go through life, son." -hg)
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To: freespirited

“raise as much as $1 trillion.”

You taxes will rise to meet your share of that.
Oh, but they mis-printed “at least” LOL!

It’s a perfect beltway answer: more spending, more debt. more promises.


38 posted on 07/19/2011 12:10:27 PM PDT by mrsmith
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To: freespirited

This is our last chance to save the republic. No debt extension. Cut govt off.


39 posted on 07/19/2011 12:14:17 PM PDT by rokkitapps ( Hearings on healthcare waivers NOW! (If you agree make this your tagline))
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
It’s going to raise taxes on me and other productive people to fund the waste. NO./i>

Like you, I'm suspicious.

But where in the article does it say they plan to raise taxes on anybody?


40 posted on 07/19/2011 12:20:27 PM PDT by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance On Parade)
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
It’s going to raise taxes on me and other productive people to fund the waste. NO.

In what way will your taxes be raised?

41 posted on 07/19/2011 12:26:15 PM PDT by Siena Dreaming
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To: LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
It’s going to raise taxes on me and other productive people to fund the waste. NO.

In what way will your taxes be raised?

42 posted on 07/19/2011 12:28:09 PM PDT by Siena Dreaming
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To: RitaOK; FourPeas
Coburn just yesterday announced his NINE TRILLION DOLLAR CUT plan. Coburn isn’t done at three trillion by any means. So, what’s up?

He announced his plan, but obviously you can't be the only one who votes for something and see it pass. It was going nowhere.

But what did seem to happen was that the group must have embraced a bunch of his ideas to come up with the $3.7 figure. Up to now I haven't seen these ideas expressed. The Obama plan did not have these same ideas.

43 posted on 07/19/2011 12:31:31 PM PDT by Siena Dreaming
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To: freespirited

A proposed cut of $3.7 trillion over 10 years means that there will be little if any actual cut in spending.

We need more than $3.7 trillion cut over the next two years.


44 posted on 07/19/2011 12:45:15 PM PDT by Iron Munro (The more effeminate & debauched the people, the more they are fitted for a tyrannical government.)
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To: Fee
About $4.5 Trillion is owed to Social Security. That's not tied to Wall Street ~ nor to the Vatican ~ nor to the Bilderbergers.

That is money taken out of the pockets of working men and women and then borrowed to send out grants to school teachers with better health care and retirement plans than any working men ever imagined.

There's other stuff, but I thought I'd remind everyone of what the Democrats did with their half century of dominance of the Congress.

45 posted on 07/19/2011 12:55:56 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: freespirited; All
Here's your traitor, GOP:


46 posted on 07/19/2011 1:03:42 PM PDT by newzjunkey (Coburn cannot be trusted)
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To: All

1 trillion in new taxes right away, 370 billion a year in “cuts” over ten years. Some of the “cuts” are from “savings” that if targets are not met can be made up by( read additional taxes) an expedited vote of the senate.


47 posted on 07/19/2011 1:06:04 PM PDT by icwhatudo ("laws requiring compulsory abortion could be sustained under the constitution"-Obama official)
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To: muawiyah
Since the Constitution prohibits appropriations for a period longer than 2 years these ten year plans are ALL BULL DROPPINGS

The Constitution only explicitly prohibits appropriations to the Army and Navy than are of a longer term than two years. (Article I, Section 8).

As I recall there are court cases that limit the ability of one congress to tie the hands of later congresses, but I don't know the details of this.

48 posted on 07/19/2011 1:09:40 PM PDT by wideminded
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To: okie01

The summary is on ZeroHedge.

All couched in generalities, except that they will reduce or eliminate the middle class’s tax deductions for their homes and their retirements.


49 posted on 07/19/2011 1:13:36 PM PDT by LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
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To: freespirited

So 37 cents this year and 4 trillion in the tenth year?


50 posted on 07/19/2011 1:15:32 PM PDT by A CA Guy ( God Bless America, God bless and keep safe our fighting men and women.)
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