Supercommittee Can’t Agree on Budget Baseline

Wednesday, 12 Oct 2011 04:45 PM

By Newsmax Wires

  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
One big issue for the supercommittee charged with recommending $1.25 trillion in budget deficit reduction by Nov. 23 is what baseline to use for the budget. That baseline will determine the official amount assigned to the deficit cuts recommended for the next decade by the supercommittee, The Hill reports.

The fact that the committee can’t agree on this basic, preliminary question raises questions as to whether it will be able to produce a set of proposals by the Nov. 23 deadline. If it doesn’t do so, automatic spending cuts are supposed to be invoked.

“Baselines are always an issue,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp, a committee member, told The Hill.

Senate and House budget committees generally decide on the baseline to be used for determining the budgetary impact of a specific bill. The committees typically use Congressional Budget Office estimates that rely on current law to determine the baseline.

But the supercommittee gets to use whatever baseline it wants. House Speaker John Boehner says the committee should use current law as its benchmark. That would prevent it from changing income tax rates, as doing so would count as a major revenue decrease, unless the committee assumed all of the tax cuts implemented by President George W. Bush in 2001 and 2003 were eliminated. And Democrats only want to wipe out tax cuts for the wealthy.

“Legislation must be scored by the Congressional Budget Office, which uses a current law baseline,” Boehner’s spokesman, Michael Steel, said Tuesday. “As the Speaker has said repeatedly, tax hikes are a non-starter, because tax hikes destroy jobs.”

The supercommittee would be ignoring precedent if it adopts a baseline different from current law, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former CBO director who also was a senior adviser for Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign, told The Hill. “I thought the default would be current law. That’s always been what CBO has scored against. For the committee to do something else would be quite dramatic,” he said.

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Retype Email:
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

RNC Directs Extra $8 Million to Senate Early-Vote Efforts

Thursday, 28 Aug 2014 09:42 AM

The Republican National Committee is sinking an addition $8 million into U.S. Senate races, Politico reported.
 . . .

Mitch McConnell Lays Out Plan to Roll Back Obama's Agenda

Thursday, 28 Aug 2014 06:51 AM

A Republican-controlled Congress would use the power of the purse to overturnPresident Barack Obama's policies, Senate M . . .

Report: Florida Dixiecrats Less Impressed With Charlie Crist

Wednesday, 27 Aug 2014 22:41 PM

Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat Charlie Crist handily won Florida's Democratic primary Tuesday against Nan . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved