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  • Hurricane Sandy Relief: An Early Opportunity for Budgeting

    A good test of whether the 113th Congress is likely to take budgeting seriously will come early this week, when the House considers the remainder of its Hurricane Sandy relief legislation. House conservatives are proposing several amendments that would cut enough spending to offset the $17 billion base bill (H.R. … More

    Congress Limps Out of Town with a Fractured Budget Process

    Happily, the world did not end on December 21, as some interpreters of the Mayan Long-Count Calendar predicted. Earth did not get sucked into the black hole at the center of the galaxy; it did not crash into the planet Nibiru; its core did not heat up, causing earthquakes and … More

    Amendment Cuts Pork from Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill

    An example of fiscal responsibility turned up yesterday in an unexpected place: the U.S. Senate. Senator Dan Coats (R–IN) offered an amendment to President Obama’s $60.4 billion Hurricane Sandy relief bill that would be far less costly and much better focused on the storm’s victims. Maybe common sense in budgeting … More

    Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill: More Spending Than Disaster Aid

    The Hurricane Sandy relief bill racing through the U.S. Senate is a perfect example of the spend-now-save-later practices that are driving the government deeper in debt. Lawmakers cannot seem to find $55 billion in offsets to prevent a devastating cut in national defense, but they can easily whip up $60.4 … More

    Chart of the Week: Obama’s Fiscal Cliff Plan Has $4 of Tax Hikes to $1 of Cuts

    In one of heaven’s sweeter ironies, President Obama today launched the defense of his fiscal cliff proposal at a factory that makes…tinker toys. The setting perfectly reflected the Administration’s level of seriousness about the budget. The “plan,” presented to Republican leaders yesterday, consists of $1.6 trillion in tax hikes over … More

    Obamacare Loses Again in Deficit Reduction Debate

    Niall Ferguson poked a hornet’s nest Sunday with his Newsweek cover story, in large part for its claim that Obamacare would increase the budget deficit. “Anyone who actually read, or even skimmed, the CBO [Congressional Budget Office] report knows that it found that [Obamacare] would reduce, not increase, the deficit,” … More

    Another Temporary Budget Deal: Don’t Blame a “Broken” Process

    The stopgap spending agreement reached by House and Senate leaders may be the only way Congress will escape a post-election “lame duck” showdown over funding government agencies. It also presumably helps clear the agenda so Congress can focus on Taxmageddon and the scheduled defense-devastating sequestration—two other major fiscal problems lawmakers … More

    Sluggish Economic Growth: More Reason to Renounce Tax Hikes

    On the afternoon of another discouraging assessment of the nation’s economic growth, the Obama Administration late Friday quietly released its mid-year update of the budget. The synchronicity made clear just how far from reality the President’s fiscal and economic policies have drifted—and the imperative of a prompt course correction. Friday … More

    The Easiest Substitute for Defense Cuts: Obamacare

    In case no one connected the dots, a report this week from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) held the solution to a serious problem plaguing Congress: How to replace the devastating spending cuts scheduled to carve up the Pentagon starting in January. Answer: Repeal Obamacare. If that sounds too simple, … More

    Needless and Irresponsible Delays on Congressional Appropriations

    After weeks of decent progress in advancing the fiscal year (FY) 2013 appropriations bills—the annual spending bills that finance the operations of government agencies—the process, disappointingly, appears to be stalling. According to CQ Budget Tracker: Although both chambers will work on appropriations bills this month, Congress appears unlikely to clear … More