Medicare pay for doctors was supposed to be cut to fund health reform. Now, Congress is trying to do the opposite.
At White House, Obama touts the tax deal as protecting Americans. But he refers to Republicans as 'hostage-takers' and suggests criticism of the deal by liberal Democrats is 'sanctimonious.'
Americans appear to back the intent of the bipartisan commission report – cutting the deficit – but it is less clear whether they approve of the panel's dramatic solutions.
The members of President Obama's bipartisan fiscal commission agree on one big thing: The problem of runaway deficits and public debt requires urgent attention. Democrats and Republicans on the panel even seem to have moved toward consensus on some of the policy responses to the problem. But getting to "yes" on a plan to stabilize the national debt still faces big hurdles. Here are four of big areas of disagreement.
Thursday headlines note the failure of President Obama's bipartisan deficit commission to reach consensus, but the opposite is also true to some extent. Key Democrats and Republicans on the commission voiced agreement on some important things during the panel's public meeting Wednesday. Sooner or later, these points of common ground could help pave the way for legislation.
Rep. Paul Ryan (R) of Wisconsin praised Obama's debt commission report at a Monitor Breakfast Thursday, but said he wouldn't vote for it because it fattened health care.
Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles, co-chairs of President Obama's deficit commission, hope their final report will start an 'adult conversation' about the national debt. But members of Congress might have too much to lose politically to back the report.