Thanksgiving: Doomsday for Entitlements
By Don Flynn
Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Tex.)
WASHINGTON—A massive $2.4 trillion 10-year cost-cutting proposal from the “Super Twelve” bipartisan Congressional committee is expected by November in time to dump a turkey on the Thanksgiving holiday spirit.
Political observers credited Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), members of the Tea Party and other conservatives, in creating the Budget Control Act that increased the national debt limit by $400 billion in return for $917 billion in cuts, and on condition that the Super Committee then find $1.5 trillion more in cuts by Nov. 23 as part of a 10-year plan to slash the $2.4 trillion.
The second-step $1.5 trillion in cuts faces an up-or-down, “yes or no” vote Dec. 23 by Congress without amendments or filibuster, and if the Joint Committee does not find the cuts, it will trigger an automatic slash in social and military programs by 2013.
The complex, long-term, step-by-step reduction of the deficit may prevent President Obama and the Congress from creating major new spending on social programs in the future. The committee is reportedly eyeing Medicaid as the major entitlement to be hit. Social Security, Medicare and Defense are also on the chopping block.
Under a last-minute agreement by President Obama and the Congress in early August, six Democrats and six Republicans from the House and Senate were appointed to a Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction looking at how to reform the four huge programs.Read More
Rev. Jim Wallis
WASHINGTON--They were a different kind of lobbyists at the White House, not angling for help to get re-elected, seeking personal favors, or passage of a special interest law.
They came empty-handed, not rich fat cats that politicians listen to, not as contributors to election campaigns, not spokespersons for the middle class who represent voters.
Instead they represented what they call the “Circle of Protection,” which they formed to defend the poor in the budget debates.
Jim Wallis of Sojourners with 11 other national faith leaders sat with President Oba...Read More
Evangelical Protestantism and Catholicism are the top 2 faiths in America. (Data Source: Pew Forum)
WASHINGTON--Fierce competition—now developing among economically hard-hit European, Latin American, African and Middle Eastern countries—may soon decide which denomination will emerge as the number one religion in America.
As of now, Catholics and Evangelicals are running neck-to-neck. Catholics comprise 23.9 percent, whereas Evangelical Protestants have topped the list of religions in recent years with a whopping 26.3 percent, replacing the long-running Catholic lead.
However, due to the economic turmoil in Europe, the Evangelical foothold here may soon slip. T...Read More