Debt & Taxes
White House Backs Away from Chained CPI
Friday, April 12, 2013 - 12:44pm
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The White House is backing off its proposal to trim Social Security and other benefits by using chained CPI after receiving a cool reception from Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters yesterday that President Obama only included chained CPI to appease Republicans, many of which had previously supported the proposal, but are now distancing themselves from the president’s offer. “This was a Republican proposal,” Carney said. But party leaders including House Speaker John Boehner criticized the plan for not going far enough to trim spending, while others, including RNCC Chair Rep. Greg Walden said it hurts the elderly, a view in line with liberal Democrats, who expectedly bashed Obama’s plan for touching Social Security.  -  Read more at Reuters

50/50 SHOTAT DEFICIT REDUCTION    After meeting with Obama at the White House for dinner Wednesday evening, GOP senators believe there is less than a 50-50 chance of reaching a grand bargain, one lawmaker who attended the dinner told The Hill. The two sides agreed to exchange proposals outlining how far they are willing to go on tax and entitlement reform in the coming weeks. “We’re realistic about what the chances are but we have an obligation to try,” said the senator, who The Hill did not identify.    -   Read more at The Hill

YOUR TAX DOLLARS FINANCE THE TALIBAN    A new audit by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction shows that a poorly managed contracting process has led millions of U.S. tax dollars to end up in the hands of the Taliban and criminal elements in Afghanistan over the past decade.  -  Read more at The Fiscal Times

THE HIDDEN COLLEGE EXPENSE PARENTS DON’T COUNT ON    Everyone knows college is expensive. Most people are prepared to shovel out thousands of dollars to cover tuition, housing and books, but there are a whole host of other significant costs involved with preparing for college. According to IVYwise, most families will spend about $3,500 a year on college visits, college application fees, SAT and ACT tests. -   Read more at The Fiscal Times

ONE-THIRD OF AMERICANS ACTUALLY LIKE DOING THEIR TAXES     A new Pew Research poll shows 34 percent of Americans like doing their income taxes, and five percent love it. When asked why, 29 percent of respondents said they are getting a refund, while 17 percent say they just don’t mind it or they are good at it; 13 percent say doing their taxes gives them a sense of control, while the same percentage cites a feeling of obligation – that it is their duty to pay their fair share. Of course, the majority of Americans, 56 percent dislike the annual ordeal. -  See the poll here

Washington Correspondent Brianna Ehley, based in D.C., covers Congress, government agencies and spending issues, health care, and tax and economic policy for The Fiscal Times.