The Budget Vote Reveals Republican Divide

What to make of the House’s ratification this week of the budget package passed by the U.S. Senate just minutes into 2013? I had no doubt about what the House should do, and said so in this space on New Year’s morning, and it’s to reject a deal that did nothing on spending cuts. But while the House Republicans didn’t seem thrilled with the deal, they voted it in, and the reasons given for ... More

The House Should Reject The Senate’s Budget Plan

The Democratic-controlled U.S. Senate, in conjunction with White House input, has passed a budget proposal that would avert the automatic tax increases and spending cuts that went into effect at 12:01 AM today. Or perhaps I should correct that—it averts the spending cuts, with the package almost exclusively focused on tax increases. Even though I’ve advocated House Republicans being open to co... More

Congressional Chaplain Fr. Patrick Conroy’s prayer for wisdom in fiscal cliff negotiations

It’s being reported by multiple outlets that a deal to avert the fiscal cliff is “within sight.” The specifics are still a bit murky, but if the president and congressional leaders come to an agreement, let it not be said that prayer didn’t have something to do with it. During a pro-forma session of the House of Representatives last Thursday (video of which can be found here) Congressional... More
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Has The Political System Failed?

The budget negotiations in Washington D.C. roll on, with the odds increasing that a package of January 1 tax hikes and spending cuts will kick in automatically. I’ve argued before that not only is not the worst outcome, it might well be the best possible one, given the results of the last election. What is disturbing is what this whole process says about our political system—both parties seem ... More

Let’s Go Over The Fiscal Cliff

The phrase “fiscal cliff” has rapidly become the most overused cliché in American politics. It’s replaced “double down” which was abused during the campaign. President Obama and Mitt Romney accused each other of doubling down on some sort of allegedly failed policy so frequently that I wondered if each man was revealing a previously suppressed desire to be a blackjack dealer in Las Vega... More

The Debt Deal That Should Be Made

Where do we go from here? President Obama is re-elected, but Republicans not only retained control in the House of Representatives, but added to their majority. While the GOP was a train wreck in the Senate and blew opportunities to close the gap or take control, they still have more than enough seats to filibuster controversial legislation (you only need 41), something they didn’t have in the f... More

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