In recent weeks the congressional Appropriations Committees made considerable progress on bills for the coming fiscal year. But the limited number of legislative days left and an increasingly partisan atmosphere have led to speculation that few of the bills will be completed before Congress goes home to campaign.
Debate is growing, especially among Democrats, about extending the Bush tax cuts. Concord believes the cuts should not be permanently extended without a solid long-term fiscal plan.
Four House Democrats introduced deficit-reduction legislation that would scale back tax breaks and cut spending in defense, agriculture and other areas. Meanwhile GOP Rep. Paul Ryan presented his plan to reduce the debt at a public forum. Concord commends policymakers from either party who are willing to put specifics on the table.
Concord Budget Counsel Cliff Isenberg provides details on these and other developments in Congress in a new blog entry.