It's Not Getting Any Easier for Boehner
February 11, 2011
I think Ezra Klein is correct in Wonkbook (which remains excellent, by the way—anyone wanting to keep up with policy developments should really make it a daily must) about what really mattered in the House this week. It’s how easily the leadership was rolled by the rank and file on spending: This loss, much more than the failed votes on the extension of the PATRIOT Act or funds for the United Nations (both of which were brought to the floor under a rule requiring a 2/3rd majority for passage) shows that the House GOP leadership has little sway and less control over the rank-and-file.
The Debt Commission's Gaping Flaw
November 12, 2010
Stan Collender identifies the biggest hole in the center of the debt commission's plan -- it wrenches billions of dollars out of the domestic discretionary budget without saying what functions will be sacrificed: The plan calls for a substantial reduction in federal employees. A reduction in employees generally results in the government relying on more outside consultants to get the work done but, in addition to the recommended reductions-in-force, Bowles-Simpson also calls for a significant cuts in the use of contractors. The combination of those two seems to indicate that the now smalle
What Everybody Misunderstands About The GOP's Choice
November 05, 2010
The Republicans have a choice as to how they plan to operate in Congress. But it's not this choice that's being presented in the press: But [Michele Bachmann's] candidacy vividly illustrates the central tension facing Mr. Boehner and his team: balancing the demands of new lawmakers, some of whom ran against the Republican establishment and advocate a no-compromise stance toward the Obama administration and Democratic policies, against the need to deliver some accomplishments at a time of economic distress.
Budget Wonk Smash!
September 24, 2010
You wouldn't like Stan Collender when he's angry: Can this really be happening? Is every bad or failed budget idea from the 1970s to the 1990s coming around again and being discussed as if the failure never happened? Doesn't anyone have a memory? Does no one remember the pain? Are we in an endless budget version of the movie Groundhog Day? First revenue sharing was being seriously proposed. Then government shutdowns started to be discussed again as if they're a serious way to govern. And now, it's...wait for it...two-year federal budgets as the cure-all for the fiscal ills of the country