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Newslinks for Wednesday August 3, 2011

Posted on 08/03/2011


5:15pm The Republican: Preventing Obama's recess appointments

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 21.22.05 4:15pm Video: Rep. Eric Cantor: The president is in over his head as to what to do about this economy

2:45pm Ideas: Ding dong, the Keynesian witch is dead: here's why

2:00pm Rep. Phil Roe: The Budget Control Act of 2011 is by no means perfect - but it is a good first step that is consistent with conservative principles

1:45pm Latest analysis from the CATO Institute says economic freedom increases happiness at all levels of wealth, not just up to a certain income range

1:30pm Video: Failed policies, failed leadership, failed growth: The NRSC says 'welcome to the recovery'

12:15pm The Republican: So what comes next?

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 16.17.49 11:15am House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan: Ever since they fudged the numbers to pass ObamaCare, Democrats have abandoned credible spending plans

11:00am The Republican: Majority of Americans believe Washington needs a pay cut

10:30am Video:

Ryan Streeter on The Republican: How much of America's debt problem is OUR fault (that’s right, as in you and me, not just those narcissists in Washington, DC)?

Default averted, attention turns to super committee

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.58.14 "One day after a climactic vote in the House, the Senate easily approved the measure, 74 to 26, with significant majorities of both parties supporting it. President Obama promptly signed the bill and submitted a formal request to Congress to lift the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling, instantly giving Treasury $400 billion in additional borrowing power. With the immediate crisis averted, Obama and congressional leaders quickly turned their attention to the next front in the war over the federal budget: a new legislative committee that will have the job of developing a broader plan to control the government’s debt. The bipartisan panel, to be named this month, is likely to confront the same ideological divide that caused an almost crippling impasse in the debt-limit debate. Republican leaders are warning that they will not include anyone on the panel who is willing to raise taxes, prompting Democrats to threaten a hard line against cuts to Social Security and Medicare benefits." - Washington Post

  • "Lawmakers, defense sector have diverging views on debt law’s effect" - The Hill
  • "With President Barack Obama signing into law the $2.1 trillion debt deal Tuesday, the nation averted a historic default and might have cleared the way for a more productive Congress." - Roll Call ($)
  • Jennifer Rubin: "Empty words from the White House on the super-committee and taxes" - Right Turn on the Washington Post

Debt deal spending cuts seen as a good first step, not a cure

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.34.49 "There is something you should know about the deal to cut federal spending that President Obama signed into law on Tuesday: It does not actually reduce federal spending. By the end of the 10-year deal, the federal debt would be much larger than it is today. Indeed, both the government and its debts will continue to grow faster than the American economy, primarily because the new law does not address federal spending on health care. That is the reason that the ratings agency Standard & Poor’s and its rivals still are threatening to remove the United States from their lists of risk-free borrowers, although the other agencies, Moody’s and Fitch, both said Tuesday that they would watch and wait for now. It is also the reason that many conservative Republicans refused to vote for the agreement, calling it a grossly inadequate answer to a pressing problem." - New York Times

  • Post-recess, budget battles may still dominate Congress - The Hill
  • Editorial: Default averted, but deficit crisis still looms - USA Today
  • "The heft of the Tea Party is about to endure a critical test, as lawmakers enter the second chapter of their deficit-reduction plan after approving a record increase in the debt ceiling." - Fox News

Yesterday on The Republican: What they're saying: Republicans weigh in on why they voted against the debt deal

Stocks plunge despite debt deal

"Stocks posted their worst daily decline in nearly a year Tuesday, wiping out the year’s gains and raising fresh questions about the strength of the economic recovery. Despite the seemingly positive news that President Obama signed the long-awaited agreement to lift the federal borrowing limit, the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index tumbled 2.6 percent — its seventh straight day of losses, making for its longest losing streak since October 2008. The Nasdaq composite index tumbled 2.7 percent, while the Dow Jones industrial average dropped 2.2 percent. The declines were the worst in nearly a year for both the S&P and the Nasdaq. They also put the S&P in the red for 2011." - Washington Post

Moody's confirms the nation's AAA credit rating, but with caveats

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.35.55 "Moody's Investors Service became the second credit-rater to confirm the nation's AAA credit rating following an increase to the debt limit, but also noted that downgrade could be on the way if Congress does not follow through on its promises. In a statement issued after markets closed, Moody's said the debt-limit deal passed by Congress and signed by the president Tuesday has "virtually eliminated" the possibility of a default. It called the deal a "first step" towards a better fiscal picture for the nation. However, in an acknowledgment that most of the effects of the deal do not take place until after a special committee mulls ways to tackle the debt, Moody's also assigned a negative outlook to the nation's credit rating. In effect, Moody's said it was not taking Congress at its word that more fiscal restraint would be forthcoming." - The Hill

Editorial: "A day after purchasing managers reported an "unexpected" slump in manufacturing, another surprise report shows consumer spending falling for the first time in nearly two years. Double dip, anyone? Despite the largest Keynesian spending splurge in the history of the planet, the economy continues to founder. The last two years' "stimulus" — meant to get consumers and businesses humming again — was in excess of 10% of GDP, an unheard of economic intervention, exceeding even FDR's during the Depression." - IBD

Medicaid, Medicare tab keeps growing

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.38.15 "The costs of the government's big health care programs are soaring again, expenses not tackled in the agreement President Obama signed into law Tuesday to raise the nation's debt limit and cut federal spending. Medicare and Medicaid spending rose 10% in the second quarter from a year earlier to a combined annual rate of almost $992 billion, according to new data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). The two programs are on track to rise $90 billion in 2011 and crack the $1 trillion milestone for the first time. The jump in health care spending is the biggest since the Medicare prescription drug benefit was added five years ago and ends a brief lull in the spending increases that occurred during the economic downturn. The debt limit and spending package approved by Congress and Obama don't restrict costs of Medicare, Medicaid and other entitlement programs. The rapidly escalating costs of the health care programs will challenge lawmakers seeking to rein in federal spending in the future, especially in 2014, when coverage expands to people who are uninsured now." - USA Today

Congress leaves DC, leaving FAA and 4,000 jobs in limbo

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.39.09 "The government is likely to lose more than $1 billion in airline ticket taxes because lawmakers have left town for a month without resolving a partisan standoff over a bill to end the partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration. The government has lost more than $200 million because airlines are unable to collect taxes on ticket sales because the FAA's operating authority has expired. The Senate recessed Tuesday until September, erasing any possibility for quickly resolving the issue. The House left Monday night. Caught up in the partisan acrimony are nearly 4,000 FAA employees who have been furloughed, although air traffic controllers remain on the job." - SF Chronicle | Washington Post

Trade groups tell Congress: Stay out of FDA salmon probe

"A coalition of nearly 30 organizations in the animal agriculture industry sent a letter to the heads of the House and Senate on Tuesday, asking lawmakers not to intervene as the Food and Drug Administration considers whether to approve genetically engineered salmon as food." - LA Times

News from the states:

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.40.27

  • "Governor Sam Brownback comes under fire for plans to attend Governor Rick Perry’s Prayer Day" - Washington Wire on the WSJ
  • Amazon battles states over sales tax - WSJ
  • "On Monday, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed a law that makes it easier for the children of immigrants--legal or illegal--to pay for college. The Illinois DREAM Act, which passed the state Senate by a wide margin in May, creates a nine-person commission and a "DREAM Fund," a privately funded account to hold donations for grants and scholarships. The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Quinn personally pledged $1,000 to the fund, which will not use any tax dollars. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel also attended the Monday signing." - Huffington Post

White House report to detail anti-extremism effort

"The White House will unveil its strategy to counter radicalization on Wednesday afternoon, ending months of speculation about how President Obama intends to tackle the growing problem of violent extremism in this country. The strategy paper, titled The National Strategy on Empowering Local Partners to Prevent Violent Extremism, has been more than a year in the making and marks the first time the U.S. has laid out a comprehensive strategy to counter violent extremism." - NPR

Lawmakers raise campaign cash at Taylor Swift's concerts

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.41.50 "Forget the debt limit and other weighty issues of the world. For some members of Congress, it's time to raise campaign cash and entertain donors at Taylor Swift's sold-out concerts in Washington. The country-pop singer's "Speak Now" tour stops tonight and tomorrow at the Verizon Center, where the luxury suites often get a workout from politicians trying to pad their campaign accounts...Lady Gaga, for example, provided the backdrop for past fundraisers at Verizon hosted by Senate Democrats Tom Harkin and Frank Lautenberg. We should note right here that the fundraising events or the politicians who host them are not endorsed by these entertainers." - USA Today

Redrawing lines may go past 2012

"Think redistricting will be over next year? Think again. There’s a possibility that several key states will go into overtime, with lawsuits dragging the process past the 2012 elections. The scenarios range from lawmakers having to file for re-election in their current district and then refile later in a redrawn one to, in the worst case, running in one district next year and then a redrawn one in 2014. Texas and Florida are likely to have the most controversial and litigious maps, with six new House seats at stake between the two states. The new Texas map has already passed and is awaiting pre-clearance. In Florida, the redistricting process isn’t expected to get under way until early 2012. In Texas, either courts or the Justice Department must clear the new map before the Dec. 12 candidate filing deadline for the March primary." - Roll Call ($)

Yesterday on Video: In praise of Rick Perry, new super PAC asks 'what if we had a better option for president'

Mormons duck 2012 political duel

Screen shot 2011-08-03 at 11.42.38 "The Mormon Church is preparing for the 2012 elections with a campaign message of its own: It has nothing to do with orchestrating or promoting the presidential candidacies of Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman Jr., both Mormons." - WSJ

Yesterday on Video: Jon Huntsman says he's encouraged about America's economic future

"The corruption and murder trial of ex-Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak has begun in Cairo, with the frail former leader appearing in a cage in the courtroom." - CNN

"Egypt's deposed President Hosni Mubarak is wheeled into a Cairo court on a hospital bed to hear charges that he ordered the killing of protesters." - BBC News

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