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Speaker of the House John Boehner (L) listens to House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R) discussing the Balanced Budget Amendment, which is scheduled to be considered on the floor of the House next week, at a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washingt
As you'll see, this appears to be more of the same, but dressed up in a new disguise:
Republicans offered up their own proposal to avert the impending “fiscal cliff” on Monday amid Democratic demands that the GOP match the Obama administration’s plan with one of their own.

In a letter to President Barack Obama, House Republican leaders outlined the contours of a deal they said would achieve a net savings of $2.2 trillion. The plan, which is based on fiscal commission Democratic co-chairman Erskine Bowles’s proposal to the super committee, would achieve these savings through revenue from tax reforms, health savings and discretionary spending cuts.

If you read the letter, it's basically a two-page whinefest about how much they hated President Obama's proposal from last week. But the only thing included in their counteroffer is a regurgitation of their willingness to raise $800 billion in new revenue from unspecified tax reforms along with a proposal to cut $300 billion in discretionary spending and $900 billion in entitlements. They offer no details whatsoever to explain how they would achieve any of these targets. They also say they want to continue all spending cuts included in the Budget Control Act last year, which presumably means the sequester would remain in effect. There might be more to this "offer," but at least at first glance, it appears to be nothing more than some numbers picked out of thin air, and certainly not an offer worth taking seriously.

12:54 PM PT: From their letter here's the heart of their so-called "proposal":

For instance, on November 1 of last year, Erskine Bowles, the co-chair of your debt commission, presented the Joint Select Committee with a middle ground approach that garnered praise from many fiscal watchdogs and nonpartisan experts.  He recommended that both parties agree to a balanced package that includes significant spending cuts as well as $800 billion in new revenue.

Notably, the new revenue in the Bowles plan would not be achieved through higher tax rates, which we continue to oppose and will not agree to in order to protect small businesses and our economy.  Instead, new revenue would be generated through pro-growth tax reform that closes special-interest loopholes and deductions while lowering rates.  On the spending side, the Bowles recommendation would cut more than $900 billion in mandatory spending and another $300 billion in discretionary spending.  These cuts would be over and above the spending reductions enacted in the Budget Control Act.

This is by no means an adequate long-term solution, as resolving our long-term fiscal crisis will require fundamental entitlement reform.  Indeed, the Bowles plan is exactly the kind of imperfect, but fair middle ground that allows us to avert the fiscal cliff without hurting our economy and destroying jobs.  We believe it warrants immediate consideration.

If you are agreeable to this framework, we are ready and eager to begin discussions about how to structure these reforms so that the American people can be confident that these targets will be reached.

That's not a proposal. It's barely enough for a bullet point. It's not something a legislator came up with. It's something from a P.R. flack.

12:55 PM PT: Oh yeah, and their plan for more tax revenue? Lower tax rates. Brilliant!

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Comment Preferences

  •  "Not a serious offer" (27+ / 0-)

    As Speaker Boehner said recently, "It's not a serious offer," and this time it applies to his own offer.  

  •  Part 2 of the Grover Norquist suicide pact (11+ / 0-)

    mandates that loophole closings be coupled with rate reductions....

    In the version for the U.S. House of Representatives, the signer pledges to:[5]

        ONE, oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses; and

        TWO, oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:49:57 PM PST

    •  Absurd (5+ / 0-)

      One thing that makes the GOP position so logically absurd is their stated desire to LOWER tax rates while making up for the lower rates with reduced deductions.  

      Since the Norquist pledge requires them not to raise taxes $1 by reducing deductions, why go through this charade at all?

      Even if we assume that they are being honest (they are not), why in the hell would you spend ANY significant legislative time telling someone - "Hey, dukelawguy, last year you paid $32,000 in federal taxes; this year after we are all done you will pay.....$32,000 in federal taxes.  Congrats."


      The only thing I can figure is this - if the rates go from 36% to 20%, the offsets won't be enough to get back to $0, or if they are then the GOP will just suggest separate bills to bring back the deductions, which everyone will support.

      •  And somehow in Republican fantasyland (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        smiley7, phonegery, JML9999, mumtaznepal

        this exercise would also magically generate hundreds of billions in new revenue. Basically they are pushing the discredited Romney/Ryan plan while continuing to adhere to their Norquist pledge and the "librul media" all agree that they are making major concessions. Meanwhile the CBO STILL can't score their proposal because it lacks any specifics. I think it's time for a prime time Presidential address to the People because we sure as hell aren't getting the truth from the %2 that make up the MSM who are willing to sell out %98 of us to protect their tax handouts.

      •  They want the rates to go to 20% and then they'll (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        smiley7, JML9999, mumtaznepal

        take up more revenue for closing loopholes.  They won't need to (and would refuse to) pass bills to do away with loopholes (thereby raising revenue) because that would be raising taxes.  See how perfectly that works?

    •  Among its absurdities-doesn't allow for GDP growth (7+ / 0-)

      You have a growing population, and a growing economy, so even if you had a net-neutral budget growth per person you would have to raise the size of the budget over time and revenue.

      This deflationary (drown government in the bathtub agenda) all-one-can-ever-do-with-taxes-is-reduce-them combination assures that government would always shrink -- which is the point -- even for the so-called "required" functions of government (like, oh, maintaining our civilization).

      Republicans: bad at math.

      Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

      by TheCrank on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:37:14 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  No specifics = no offers. (12+ / 0-)

    U want to raise revenue?  Specify how.  Cuts? Specify what.

    Otherwise its just the same old bs on fancy paper.

    And I thought Thugs were all in a tizzy during the election about the sequester.  That was just bs too, eh?  Or just the non-MIC cuts?

    Come back when you actually have something, OrangeOne.

    •  Bowles' proposal outlined in his (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rikon Snow, VClib

      testimony to Congress in November 2011 was pretty detailed.  This just adopts that.  

    •  Here are the specifics: (0+ / 0-)

      The Simpson-Bowles plan.  As Bowles related in his Washington Post Op-ed published the day after the election:

      It’s the type of bipartisan package toward which the fiscal commission I co-chaired with former senator Alan Simpson, the Domenici-Rivlin group, the Senate’s “Gang of Six” and the Obama-Boehner negotiations all worked. It’s a package large enough to put the debt on a clear downward path, relative to the economy, and designed well enough to promote, rather than disrupt, economic growth. It’s a package that includes real spending cuts and structural entitlement reforms to make Social Security solvent while slowing the growth of federal health spending while protecting vulnerable populations. And it’s a package that institutes fundamental tax reform that simplifies the code and encourages economic growth by cutting spending in the tax code to reduce rates and generate additional revenue for deficit reduction.
      So now the public will understand everything if they just sit down and read the Simpson-Bowles report.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:38:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Boehner: I offer to run campaign commercials (21+ / 0-)

    that attack you for your proposed cuts to any specific popular program that you propose, and that applaud me for my proposal to cut programs which I am too cowardly to name

    "Speak out, judge fairly, and defend the rights of oppressed and needy people." Proverbs 31:9

    by zdefender on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:50:01 PM PST

    •  Not actually a program cut, but one "special (0+ / 0-)

      interest" tax "loophole" the Republicans have offered to close is mortgage deductions. Not mortgage deductions for second and subsequent homes, not mortgage deductions for homes valued above X million dollars, just mortgage deductions. Apparently they think homeowners are a "special interest."

      “Social Security has nothing to do with balancing a budget or erasing or lowering the deficit.” -- Ronald Reagan, 1984 debate with Walter Mondale

      by RJDixon74135 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:54:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They don't do details (12+ / 0-)

    For them, its the "Fiscal Bluff"

    Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore

    by Minerva on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:50:27 PM PST

  •  And the world still awaits with baited breath.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, TomP vain.

  •  Another "budget" with no numbers (20+ / 0-)

    and plenty of magic.
    They got nuthin'!

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:52:18 PM PST

  •  Blah, blah, and (5+ / 0-)

    some more blah.  How quaint.

  •  So they proposed that the president submit a new (10+ / 0-)

    proposal because they didn't like his first one. i propose that president Obama tell the House to propose to the hand.

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:53:36 PM PST

  •  It's the Romney plan (8+ / 0-)

    The Boehner letter says

    "new revenue would be generated through pro-growth tax reform that closes special-interest loopholes and deductions while lowering rates"

    Hope that clarifies!

    "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power." George Orwell, 1984

    by Opuntia on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:54:14 PM PST

  •  Prepared by the underwear Gnomes (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    homo neurotic, alkalinesky, phonegery

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:54:45 PM PST

  •  When will Boehner cry? (9+ / 0-)

    When his booze runs out?  

    The House run by a drunk and fell of idiots.  The Republcians are making America a second-rate nation.

    Love all the elderly who voted for Republicans who want to cut their benefits.  At least it will be rich white folks pushing you to the curb.  Hope the racists are happy.  

    Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

    by TomP on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:54:49 PM PST

  •  did it at least have a couple of balloons? (4+ / 0-)

    a flow chart? anything?

    "Kossacks are held to a higher standard. Like Hebrew National hot dogs." - blueaardvark

    by louisev on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:55:11 PM PST

  •  They can't reveal any details before the election. (8+ / 0-)

    Because then their opponents would attack them over the details, and then they'd lose.

    "The Repube Party: We have plans, but we can't tell you what they are."

  •  A very seriour proposal... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ColoTim, smiley7

    ...from a very serious party.   :::choking sounds:::

    I'm not always political, but when I am I vote Democratic. Stay Democratic, my friends. -The Most Interesting Man in the World

    by boran2 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:56:05 PM PST

  •  I would respond by accepting the tax reforms (5+ / 0-)

    and reiterate the non-negotiable tax hike on those making over $250K and again propose the jobs bill stimulus in the earlier offer as well as maintaining the tax cuts for the middle class.  I would also propose defense spending cuts.  And with that send it back to Boner.

    •  I believe the original proposal (0+ / 0-)

      was open to the idea of discussing loophole closures and deduction trimming as an unspecified future goal.

      So, tax rates are adjusted upwards in January, and we can sit down and take our time to get the tax code revisions in place over the next year or two without the added pressure/

      The tax code is far too complex to revise this close to the deadline.

      ad astra per alia porci

      by harrije on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:10:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  they do seem to (0+ / 0-)

    govern about as well as Lucy Van Pelt plays football. They have the faux field goal down perfectly, but now that the situation is one that the play requires something different, they have no effing idea what to do.

    These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people... -Abraham Lincoln

    by HugoDog on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:58:27 PM PST

  •  I'm Tired Of Hearing About Irksome Bowles (8+ / 0-)

    and Allen Simpleton.

    The Republican Party is Simply a Coalition of Greed and Hate

    by kerplunk on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:59:13 PM PST

  •  I'm on vacation on a teensy weeny tiny island. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blue aardvark

    Really, I am!

    I have dialed down my daily news and blog input/output by approximately 90%.

    I am now engaged in the 10%.

    Republicans do not appear to have changed in the last 5 days. They will lose this one, maybe not 100%, but at least 75%. Less and less people like them.

    "This is NOT what I thought I'd be when i grew up."

    by itzik shpitzik on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 12:59:44 PM PST

  •  The White House needs to say "Where's the beef?" (9+ / 0-)

    The White House must insist on the details on the revenue and the cuts side.  How specifically are they going to raise $800 billion in revenue and from whom?  What specifically are the cuts?

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:00:46 PM PST

    •  Exactly. And in those terms. Something (0+ / 0-)

      Memorable that Netherlands pundits can master ate with all week long.  I like " where's the beef" or " there's no there, there."

      Obviously I am not a political spin-Meistersinger.

      "Let's see what fresh fuckwittery these dolts can contrive to torment themselves with this time." -- Iain Banks, The Hydrogen Sonata

      by Rikon Snow on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:11:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The WH is in the driver's seat, smile and say (0+ / 0-)

      Merry Xmas.

      "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

      by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:51:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This seems to be going really well for Republicans (9+ / 0-)

    as Rasmussen now has them down 36-47 on the generic ballot while PPP has Democrats at a +12 party ID advantage.

  •  Please stop talking about "entitlements" (12+ / 0-)

    Health care and support in old age are human rights, dammit. At least they are human rights in every other First World country except the USA.

    Democrats keep falling into the trap of adopting the repugs's wording. The repugs use certain words for a reason. "Entitlements" has an aura of whinyness, of demand for something to which one is NOT entitled.

    Stop talking about entitlements and talk about cutting up the safety net. Talk about cutting off health care for the old. Talk about pushing Social Security out of reach. Just stop using the Repug framing. It bites us every time and we keep doing it.

  •  I hope Obama tells them to "get serious" and come (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PorridgeGun, Sue B, venger

    up with something more meaningful.......Basically saying to them:  Stuff it!!!!!

    •  Simply put and evolving (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gary of Austin

      I hope Pres Obama takes the little bit of good and adds it to his plan. Instead of wasting time trashing it...capture it in content or the lack there of .. build out critical sub-parts as blank placeholders, broken record ask for the details and push push push for the info.

      Now that there are two plans on the table is there a website that will convert them into side by side comparison .... add blanks on the many different areas missing and begin to have a quick view of the two? Then update it as it goes.  Information that is not spin but facts kept in there language for the most part.

      Keep it simple.  

      I/we need a voice that is NOT Simpson-Bowles  or Fix the Debt ....etc... I want a way to follow the bouncing ball and give me clues and content to ask more questions to my elected officials and my acquaintances along the way.

      A thought Why not practice mindful speech by using Socrates' triple filter. Ask yourself: Is is true? Is it kind? Is it helpful?

      by thatwhichisgood on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:18:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Translation: we want to fuck you out of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    YOUR mortgage interest deduction, while lowering millionaire taxes AGAIN.  

    Instead, new revenue would be generated through pro-growth tax reform that closes special-interest loopholes and deductions while lowering rates.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:04:41 PM PST

  •  Bullshit aside... (6+ / 0-)
    Instead, new revenue would be generated through pro-growth tax reform that closes special-interest loopholes and deductions while lowering rates.
    It kinda sounds like the Republicans are pretty much saying we'll lower tax rates & create revenue. Anyone who knows how math works can tell you this will not actually happen...

    Follow me on Twitter! @guileofthegods

    by Guile Of The Gods on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:06:39 PM PST

  •  Faerie dust and unicorn hairs. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ColoTim, josmndsn, SingleVoter

    The GOP is not interested in a solution.  They are a collection of eternal politicians, and not a one of them has a serious plan to form policies to rule the country.

    Drive us over the financial bluff, Mr. President.  I will decidedly not like to pay more taxes, but I'm okay with it so long as we get the money we need to get the country back on track.  That's called a sense of community, conservatives.  Just in case any reading can't figure out how someone could both dislike and being willing to do the same thing.

    I'm living in an age that calls darkness light.

    by electricgrendel on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:08:05 PM PST

  •  What about military spending? (4+ / 0-)

    Why aren't we hearing anything about cuts to military spending as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations? There are automatic cuts now in place, but those will be wiped out by a budget agreement unless some of them are specifically put in place.

    I'm all in favor of a strong defense and recognize that we need to modernize certain systems, but spending as much as the rest of the world combined is just nuts. A 10 percent cut in real dollars seems very doable an quite prudent.

  •  Another fauxposal. n/t (0+ / 0-)

    The GOP can't win on ideas. They can only win by lying, cheating, and stealing. So they do.

    by psnyder on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:12:06 PM PST

  •  Amazing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ColoTim, bewareofme

    Just 4 years ago these fools were able to and decide in detail how they were going to spend and recoup Tarp money.  Today they are unable to produce a detailed plan to reduce the deficit they claim to be concerned about.

  •  It's Erskine Bowles' proposal from (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arun, psnyder, blue aardvark, VClib

    November 1, 2011 when he testified before Congress.   The letter expressly references that Bowles' proposal, and the Bowles proposal contained a good deal of detail.

    Because of that, I have a hard time seeing the White House dismissing it as "extremist" or "not serious."  That would be saying those things about Bowles, who the President put in charge of the deficit reduction commission, and I just don't think the President will do that.  

    In addition, this proposal is certain to get support from "bipartisan" sources like Fix the Debt.  

    It will be interesting to see how the White House responds to this proposal.  I have a hard time seeing the White House trash it, because it came from Bowles.  And, because it came from a Democrat, the Republicans are going to be able to assert, with a straight face, that it's "bipartisan."

    It was for this very reason -- a political reason, rather than a policy reason -- that a lot of people on the right, much as they despise giving the government any more tax revenue, have been spreading the thought over the last couple of days that Republicans should respond to the President's offer by promoting something from his own debt commission.

    Looking at this as pure political gamesmanship (which is half the story), it kind of puts the President in a box.  He either has to repudiate his debt commission (which he has never been willing to do publicly, especially after several Democrats have spoken approvingly of the S-B approach) or he has to alienate members of his base (after he has just rallied the base with his first offer, which was essentially his budget that Congress unanimously rejected last year).  Neither is a particularly good political option for the President.

    This says to me that the Republicans picked a trying to have a good political position over satisfying Grover Norquist (who doesn't even want the $800 billion in tax revenue this offers).   It will be interesting in terms of political gamesmanship, to see the WH's response.

    •  Possibly true, but (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TheLizardKing, ColoTim

      The easy response to "it's bipartisan!" is "oh yeah? if it's so bipartisan, why is no one from my party voting for it?"

      Let's not forget that the health insurance mandate/exchange regime was originally a Republican proposal, but that didn't stop Republicans from decrying it as "Socialism" and voting against it en masse.

      •  This is a proposal from a Democrat, specifically (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        the Democrat appointed by this Democratic President to chair this President's fiscal commission.  

        And that's how all the news outlets are reporting it -- as adopting the Bowles compromise from his testimony on November 1, 2011, probably just as the Republicans intended.  See here and here and here and here.

        It will be hard for the President to disavow it as "not serious" without disavowing both Bowles and the President's deficit commission.  

        The Republicans apparently choose what may end up being a pretty savvy political move over sticking to Grover Norquist doctrine.

        •  Actually, it's a proposal that didn't make it (0+ / 0-)

          out of committee, other proposals were on the same committee table. Bowles took it upon himself to present a proposal of his own making.
          People are getting very acquainted with Mr. Bowles and his Wall Street propaganda machine, Fix the Debt. So I strongly disagree, this will not be viewed by the people as a Democratic proposal. It is not, nor has it ever been endorsed by a committee of congress or any Democratic party affiliate or by President Obama.

          "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

          by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:01:39 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That is exactly how people here view things (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            they have rejected Bowles long ago.  And they think Fix the Debt has no credibility, just as you said.  If when you say "people," you mean people here, you are absolutely right.

            But the President has never adopted this site's disdain for Bowles and what he is trying to do.  The President has never adopted the view of this site that the S-B Commission was, as people here call them, the "Cat Food Commission."  The question is whether he will do so now.

        •  The WH just disavowed it! (0+ / 0-)

          "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

          by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:25:22 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Steve - there are Dems who support Bowles plan (0+ / 0-)

        and would vote for it.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 03:33:06 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The President should stand by his plan, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OrangeMike, pistolSO, venger

      as the WH said, it's a compromise and fair already. The Republicans need to step up and agree to Obama's spending cuts and tax rate hikes on the more than 240K or prepare to negotiate next year, period.

      No more compromise is necessary before the new congress.

      By the way Morgan Stanley Director Erskine Bowles is a Democrat in name only and he represents Wall Street.

      "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

      by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:44:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, the President's offer was essentially (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        his budget proposal that was unanimously rejected by Congress.  I don't think that the news media will paint that offer as a "compromise."  And it's not, really -- his budget sent to Congress was his "wish list," not a compromise with anybody.  

        If he wants to stand firm on his offer, he needs to say, that's it, my way or the highway, take it or leave it, no compromises.  That's a statement that will have credibility.  But he can't say that his offer was a "compromise offer" and have any credibility.

        In order to simply not consider this proposal, he has to essentially dismiss both Bowles and his own debt commission as not serious.  It will be interesting to see if he does that.  

        •  Sorry, you are wrong, the Presidents, budget and (0+ / 0-)

          proposal incorporates spending cuts and increased taxes on the wealthy, over 250K.
          You seem to be shrilling for Mr. Bowles.
          So what if the President's budget failed to pass, that's history, we just won an election and everything has changed.
          The President has the people behind him on this.

          President Obama has more credibility than he needs, thank you very much

          "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

          by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:18:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  smiley - Bowles has a long history of public (0+ / 0-)

        service for Democratic administrations and as a candidate in Democratic primaries. He may be a Blue Dog, but he is certainly a Democrat.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 03:37:00 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Vclib (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Bowles founded and leads Fix the Debt, sponsored by Peterson and Wall Street chieftains.  A "democrat" who supported a tea party candidate over a progressive one in NH.

          If that's Democratic to you, fine. We disagree. Loved living in San Fran, btw.

          "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

          by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 05:37:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  they are countering with Ryan's budget (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pistolSO, smiley7

    and that's what Obama needs to say.  Hey, if the people wanting Ryan's budget, wanted to Voucherize Medicare, etc. then they would have elected him!

    If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

    by k8dd8d on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:13:55 PM PST

    •  No, they are countering with Erskine Bowles (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      proposal outlined in his testimony on November 1, 2011.  

      While many in the President's base were against the Bowles proposal, it is not the same thing as the Ryan Budget.  

      •  no, not really, read the letter: (0+ / 0-)
        If we were to take your Administration’s proposal at face value, then we would counter with the House-passed Budget Resolution.  It assumes an overhaul of our tax code with revenue remaining at historically normal levels and proposes structural reforms to preserve and protect the Nation's entitlement programs, ensuring they are sustainable for the long-term rather than continuing to grow out of control.  Some of its key reforms include:
        The House-passed Budget Resolution assumes enactment of structural Medicare reform that offers future beneficiaries guaranteed coverage options, including a traditional fee-for-service Medicare plan.  This proposal is based on recent bipartisan efforts and would provide greater support for the poor and the sick and less support for the wealthy.  We achieve these reforms in Medicare without affecting current seniors or those nearing retirement.  This would slow the projected explosive spending growth in this program and eventually maintain Medicare spending as a share of the economy at 4.75 percent, thus saving the program for future generations.
        The House-passed Budget Resolution reforms Medicaid and provides states with greater flexibility to better deliver health security to beneficiaries, saving the federal government nearly $800 billion over 10 years.
        Separate from savings in our proposal for the 2010 health care law, the House-passed Budget Resolution envisions hundreds of billions in savings in other mandatory spending, including reforms to Federal employee compensation and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
        (my bolding)  The House Passed Budget Resolution is Ryan's Budget, not Bowle's proposal.  I think the diarist has missed this in their information.

        What he says is, if we thought your first offer was serious, then we respond with the House Budget, but since we don't think you were serious, let's talk about the Bowles plan.

        If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

        by k8dd8d on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:24:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  it's a threat to listen to Bowles (0+ / 0-)

          or they will back into their House Passed Budget corner, and they go on to detail what that is, including voucherizing Medicare.

          If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

          by k8dd8d on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:26:53 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  You didn't read the WHOLE letter (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          they are saying that if they wanted to respond in kind to the President, they would put forth the Ryan budget, but they are not.   At the bottom of page 2 and on to page 3, they say that they don't have the time to respond with something (the Ryan budget) that they know the administration won't accept, so they put forth the Erskine Bowles' compromise, which they say "warrants immediate consideration."  

          That's exactly how the reporting is interpreting the letter as well.  See, for example, here:

          Republican officials said the offer was based on a proposal outlined by Erskine Bowles, the former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton, in testimony last year before the congressional “supercommittee” on deficit reduction. That offer is distinct from the widely-cited Simpson-Bowles deficit plan released two years ago.
          •  I did read it, and since Obama's proposal (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            smiley7, mumtaznepal

            IS serious, he should counter against Ryan's budget and not get sucked into the Bowles argument.

            If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

            by k8dd8d on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:54:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  How can he "not get sucked into the Bowles (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              argument," since the Republican offer is essentially the Bowles compromise?  

              He should counter against an offer the Republicans did not make and ignore the offer they made -- when the "Bowles compromise" offer they  made is MORE favorable to the Democrats than the Ryan budget, because the Ryan budget includes no new tax revenue, and this "Bowles compromise" offer includes $800 billion in new tax revenue?  

    •  Ryan personally delivers his NEW budget proposal (6+ / 0-)

  •  Screw this. (5+ / 0-)

    I'm ready to take a kayak over the waterfall. This is bullshit.

    "It does not require many words to speak the truth." -- Chief Joseph, native American leader (1840-1904)

    by highfive on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:16:36 PM PST

  •  Fact Check: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, mumtaznepal

    Simpson Bowles raises rates on Capital Gains and Dividends. They told me so themselves:

    The Republican Party: The Bridge to Nowhere

    by flounder on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:17:16 PM PST

    •  Exactly Bowle wants lower tax rate for people and (0+ / 0-)

      corporations. To say Bowles is a Democrat is a long reach.
      He represents Wall Street and no Democrat should forget that.

      "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

      by smiley7 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:33:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Paul Krugman has given us actual numbers (7+ / 0-)

    NUMBERS! - regarding the amount of deficit reduction to be expected by "closing special interest loopholes and deductions, and what is meant by "broadening the base."  Neither of these terms have been defined by the GOP, and they have offered no numbers relative to deficit reduction to correspond with either of them.  This is a textbook definition of flim-flam.  Bowles' plan contains numbers, but the Republicans don't seem to want to publicize them.

    If nothing else, this should dissuade the president from considering Erskine Bowles as the next Sec. of Treasury.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:18:29 PM PST

  •  Dynamic Scoring Magic Dust (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ColoTim, venger

    Boehner's "proposal" is just the classic Republican dynamic scoring of tax cuts which magically produce higher revenues.  They've sniffed that dust repeatedly over the last thirty years to justify tax cuts, going all the way back to St. Ronnie Ray-guns reign.  It has been shown consistently by real economists, not the AEI hacks or similar shills, to be bogus.  The lower tax rates never generate sufficient GDP increases to offset the lost revenue in taxes.  Boehner's just trying to skate this fairy tale past the media and it looks like Little Lukey swallowed it whole.  Boehner needs to be told in uncertain terms that specific details are necessary for anything his team coughs up to be considered reviewable.  Laugh at him and keep laughing.

    "Love the Truth, defend the Truth, speak the Truth, and hear the Truth" - Jan Hus, d.1415 CE

    by PrahaPartizan on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:31:35 PM PST

  •  If you can save $800B from "tax reforms"... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ...why the hell don't they just go ahead and propose that now anyway?

    Just shows you they're not serious about it, they only want an excuse to cut spending.

    I believe part of the problem here is that the GOP has become circularly convinced of its own "47%" logic; they believe that federal spending is mostly about giving crap away and they only want to give crap away to people who will give some back to them (e.g. defense contractors) and not the greasy unwashed masses using public transportation and eating government cheese. They think they'll never be elected to a majority unless there's no more free stuff to persuade voters to vote for the guy who will give them free stuff, or something.

    Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

    by TheCrank on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:33:38 PM PST

  •  Circular Logic (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The circular logic surrounding their 'willingness' to accept revenue increases really boggles me.  Okay, Repubs say they are willing to raise taxes.  I think everyone agrees that we shouldn't raise taxes on lower or middle income earners.

    So instead of just raising taxes on the top tax bracket they bend themselves into pretzels claiming to be willing to raise taxes but refusing to flat out raise taxes on the top.

    It's absurd.  It's the most blatant, obvious circular logic and the media is eating it up.

  •  Time to go Harry Truman on 'Do Nothing' Repubs (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, mumtaznepal

    112th Congress has earned the title of least productive Congress, having done less than the 98 Congress of 1948.

    Elections MUST have consequences.  It's now time for the President go bully on the bullies...

    Call out their record ...

    Name call ...

    Humiliate them about the failing infrastructure in their districts by publishing list of condemned bridges ...

    Every Department Secretary hold press conferences citing the OBSTRUCTIONIST Republicans in Congress ...

    Etc. ...

    DO NOT LET UP !!

    *Austerity is the opposite of Prosperity*

    by josmndsn on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:39:54 PM PST

    •  We could do that, with the bridges. On twitter. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Any idea where we get the list?

      "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

      by mumtaznepal on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 06:13:55 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Us Bridges in need of Repair (0+ / 0-)

        THE PROBLEM:

        Homeland Security News Wire
        Report finds thousands of U.S. bridges
        in dangerous need of repair
        Published 4 April 2011

        Last week a new report found that nearly 12 percent of the bridges in the United States were “structurally deficient” and required replacement; the report found that major repairs and critical maintenance has often been delayed as states are struggling with budget shortfalls; the average age of bridges across the country is nearing forty-two years, and most were designed to have a fifty year lifespan before they were replaced or reconstructed; Transportation for America has called for increased federal funding for infrastructure to help make repairs; the American Society of Civil Engineers has recommended that the United States spend $17 billion a year on bridge maintenance, significantly more than the $10.5 billion that is currently spent each year.

        THE LIST:
        The State of Our Nation's Bridges

        Despite billions of dollars in federal, state and local funds directed toward the maintenance of existing bridges, 69,223 bridges — 11.5 percent of total highway bridges in the U.S. — are classified as "structurally deficient," requiring significant maintenance, rehabilitation or replacement.

        *Austerity is the opposite of Prosperity*

        by josmndsn on Tue Dec 04, 2012 at 01:21:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  what a dumbass silly plan (0+ / 0-)
  •  AP up to their usual shenanigans (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Just checked Yahoo! headlines which is basically the Associated Press, and they declare:

    The GOP deal offers $800 billion in new revenue through tax reform, but Boehner insist that tax rates should not go up on the top 2 percent of taxpayers.

    "Unfortunately the White House responded with the La-la-land offer that couldn't pass the House, couldn't pass the Senate."

    Boehner said the president's offer last week was "basically the president's budget from last February," which he noted received no votes in the House and no votes in the Senate.

    The AP fails to mention that the GOP's current proposal is based on the Simpson-Bowles' plan--a plan that did not pass the Republican-led House.
    Simpson-Bowles Plan Rejected By House

    WASHINGTON — The House voted decisively late Wednesday to reject a bipartisan budget mixing tax increases with spending cuts to wring $4 trillion from federal deficits over the coming decade.

    The 382-38 roll call paved the way for Republicans to muscle through their own, more stringent budget on Thursday, a measure that would blend deeper spending reductions in safety-net programs for the poor with a plan to dramatically overhaul Medicare. The vote also underscored the partisan polarization dominating Washington this election year, with leaders of both parties showing little inclination to compromise and let the other side claim a victory.

    If it is significant to report that the President's plan did not pass the House, then why isn't it equally significant that the plan the Republicans are putting forward also did not pass the House?

    AP: Associated Publicists--for the GOP.

    The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

    by FiredUpInCA on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:42:05 PM PST

  •  But the details are where (0+ / 0-)

    the DEVIL is.

  •  it's the Romney Tax Plan all over again (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    which means the press won't ask any tough questions.

    "Your victory has demonstrated that no person anywhere in the world should not dare to dream of wanting to change the world for a better place." -- Mandela

    by agoldnyc on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:52:30 PM PST

  •  Demand the Republicans produce a bill (0+ / 0-)

    that can be discussed in committee and then voted for on the floor.  They control the House, which is where the revenue bills have to originate from (well, the Senate bill for the tax cuts for middle income started with a House bill which was gutted and replaced).

    Then we'll see the targets for the cuts and the numbers.  I don't see a purpose in accepting a 2-3 page letter for Boehner as being a surrogate for an actual 1000 page bill (or however long the US Budget bill will run on).

    If they want to control Congress, they better be ready to govern.  If they just want to whine about Obama, they should vote Pelosi in as Speaker and then they can sit in the back bench and carp all they want.

  •  Bowles on Boehner (8+ / 0-)

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 01:54:46 PM PST

  •  Where's the beef? (0+ / 0-)

    Everyone in the gop is too busy getting powdered up for their turn at MTP to tend the store. Benghazi! Boo!

    wrt MTP, yesterday Norquist said that CEOs who disagree with him about never ever raising taxes ever have no business being CEOs in the first place. That settles that! You CEOs (and you know who you are) had better start walking the plank at once!

  •  posturing, nothing more . (0+ / 0-)
  •  Did they include flowcharts? (0+ / 0-)

    I long to see more of their flowcharts, such as were put forward during the health care debate.

    Economics is a social *science*. Can we base future economic decisions on math?

    by blue aardvark on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:01:19 PM PST

  •  Erskine Bowles saying this isnt the plan (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    he offered nor is it Simpsons-Bowles.

    If I'm mistaken, dont some of the Bush tax cut expire under the SB plan?

  •  They Don't Know How to Write (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, venger

    The current GOP House does not write laws, they write frameworks.  They do not work on real plans just general ideas.  There is no reason for the Dems to respond to letter.  Cutting taxes to raise more revenue does not work.  They deleyed a study from being published that said as much.

  •  GOP... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You lost the election. I know this may come as shocking news to you, but it is true. Your fiscal policies were studied by the people, they were horrified. They voted against it and you, it's over. You have a mandate from the people, it reads sit down and shut up you thieving monsters. Now stop saying Obama won't compromise while trying to push the same tired agenda again and again and again without change or fail. Look up the word compromise, I don't think you know what that means. Grow up or go home, you are not up to the job of leading the country.

    "And while it was regarded as pretty good evidence of criminality to be living in a slum, for some reason owning a whole street of them merely got you invited to the very best social occasions."

    by Shippo1776 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:11:49 PM PST

  •  Erskine Bowles has chimed in... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pistolSO, smiley7

    and basically said "don't attach my name to that piece of shit proposal".  Basically.  :-)

  •  'Pro-growth' while slashing spending=bullshit. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    There's nothing 'pro-growth' about a proposal that further slashes Federal spending. Instead that's austerity, the exact opposite of pro-growth. And it's exactly why most of Europe remains mired in a brutal depression when the U.S. is experiencing at least some economic growth, however anemic.

  •  Listening to Chris Matthews right now. The (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, venger

    president has rejected the offer on many of the points noted above, along with lack of specificity.

    Matthews is worried that if we don't get a deal done before the new congress, the world markets might be affected.

    As if Matthews knows anything about world markets.

    He has wimped out. or...maybe he's a rich guy and a closet conservative on this issue?

    Anyway, I'm ready to let this thing blow up and wait til next year to figure it out.

    Time to decorate the tree.

  •  At least two more weeks of this (0+ / 0-)

    I think they'll call it quits before Xmas and focus on "saving" the country with the tax cut restoration for households which earn less than $250 million/year.

    Yes, million.

    At least that's what they'll try to pitch to the folks at home over the holidays. It's only "fair" you see.

    When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:20:31 PM PST

  •  let's be serious (0+ / 0-)

    The Republicans are not going to propose anything serious until they have to. Nothing of any significance will be done between now and the 14th or 15th of December. In the end, the Republicans will cave because they do not want cuts the that precious military budget. But, it's important for President Obama and the Democrats to hold fast, hold firm and not give away the store before the Republicans begin to feel the heat late in December.

     No matter what the Republicans propose between now in mid-December, you know it's not their best offer. Once their backs are against the wall,  there staring at they December recess, then negotiations will begin in earnest. Between now and then, garbage. They will be proposing garbage and we should be responding with garbage.

    Be involved!

    by ecthompson on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:21:31 PM PST

  •  The GOP will add Numbers (0+ / 0-)

    to their Proposal AFTER it gets Passed into Law.

    The Next GOP Proposal will State that the Day After "Sunday"
    will be Referred to as "Monday".

    The Pox Noise Channel will pronounce the New Proposal
    as being a "Dramatic Breakthrough" in Political Thinking.

    On Giving Advice: Smart People Don't Need It and Stupid People Don't Listen

    by Brian76239 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 02:52:33 PM PST

  •  Bowles (0+ / 0-)

    The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

    by FiredUpInCA on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 03:05:44 PM PST

  •  What did it take for the Repubs to produce this? (0+ / 0-)

    It just says, "We want the Ryan Budget that was passed in the House last March, and if we can't have that we want the Simpson Bowles plan outlined in House testimony a year ago."

    "Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves." - Abraham Lincoln

    by leftreborn on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 03:13:19 PM PST

  •  It might be more sensible to allow (0+ / 0-)

    people to reclaim say up to $8,000 in previously paid income taxes one-time for a down payment and do away with the mortgage deduction (or tax credit) altogether.

    People find it hard to save up a down payment.

  •  The insulting way the Republican Party treats (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    this president angers me to no end.

    "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

    by mumtaznepal on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 05:27:50 PM PST

  •  Same old GOP crap (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Different day

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Mon Dec 03, 2012 at 06:00:29 PM PST

  •  GOP Unbelievably Consistent on Budget (0+ / 0-)

    These stunningly obtuse GOPers have presented yet another plan without any specifics. Nothing changes, apparently-yet they want to lead the country.

    I see them gather as they did a couple of years ago, to present a budget to the press, no less, whereby the printed booklet had no figures on it. They were called on it, and then scheduled another press conference to present some figures. It was like the classic "dog ate my homework, but we will have it by next Tuesday."

    The only fiscal cliff there is would be the one where we follow these clueless people.

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