The FY12 appropriations process continues to creep forward in the shadow of negotiations between the White House and congressional leaders over the debt limit and long-term deficit reduction. The Obama administration is sticking to August 2nd as the date by which a deal must be reached in order to avoid what would be the first ever U.S. default on its debt.
The administration is insistent on putting cuts to discretionary programs, entitlement reform, and taxes (particularly regarding corporate loopholes) all on the table. However, according to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), tax increases need to be removed from consideration because they can’t pass Congress. In a White House press conference today, President Obama stated that if revenue enhancements are not on the table, it will force major cuts in areas such as college student grants and medical research. Continue reading