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Showing posts with the label The Washington Post | Ezra Klein's Wonkbook

A Rick Perry primer: The Washington Post | Ezra Klein's Wonkbook

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Usually, you have to struggle to come up with news on a Monday. Congress doesn't work most weekends, and the GOP presidential race has been a relatively sleepy affair. Not this Monday. Saturday was the Ames straw poll. Michele Bachmann won it. Tim Pawlenty didn't. That was to be expected, said Pawlenty's team. He had said he needed to finish sixth or better, and he in fact finished third.In the peculiar language of political expectations, that was something close to a win. "We are just beginning, and I'm looking forward to a great campaign," Pawlenty said that night. The next day, he dropped out of the race. But here at Wonkbook, we like to look forward, not backward, and that means looking Westward to Rick Perry. The Texas governor unexpectedly racked up a respectable sixth in a straw poll he wasn't even competing in. He beat Mitt Romney by more than 100 votes. And he did all this while giving his announcement speech in

A deal that found the lowest common denominator: The Washington Post | Ezra Klein's Wonkbook

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Assuming no hiccups in the House -- and that might be a big assumption -- we’ve got a deal. The deficit-reduction side includes $1 trillion in cuts now, $1.5 trillion (or more) in deficit reduction later, and a vote on a balanced budget amendment. Meanwhile, it raises the debt ceiling by $900 billion immediately, and either $1.5 trillion (if the second deficit reduction package or a balanced budget amendment passes) or $1.2 trillion (if neither pass) later. Either way, the Treasury should have plenty of borrowing authority to get us to 2013. Behind the deal is a creative way out of the impasse that’s held up the negotiations: how do you get “balanced approach” if Republicans refused to consider revenues? The solution that both sides seem to have settled on is to substitute defense cuts where taxes would otherwise have gone. In the initial $900 billion in cuts, almost half will come from “security spending” (which includes defense, homeland security, veteran’s benefi

Republicans have won. But can they stop there?: The Washington Post | Ezra Klein's Wonkbook

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We don't yet know what the final deal to raise the debt ceiling will be. But now that Harry Reid is developing a proposal with $2.5 trillion in cuts and nothing in revenues, it's a safe bet that it won't include any tax increases. Which means that whether Republicans realize it or not, they've won. The question now is whether they can stop. Originally, the Democratic position was that we should simply raise the debt ceiling. Republicans said "no." There would have to be a deal that reduced the deficit by at least $2.4 trillion -- which is the size of the debt ceiling increase needed to get us into 2013. Then the Democratic position was that we should raise the debt ceiling through a deal that reduced the deficit by about $2.4 trillion, with $2 trillion of that coming from spending cuts and $400 billion coming from taxes. Republicans said "no." There would have to be a deal that disavowed taxes. Then the Democratic position was that