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Posted at 7:34 AM ET, 01/27/2011

Morning Bits

By Jennifer Rubin

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), aside from being a GOP rock star, is a very decent guy, according to a Marine mom.

Aside from that, do you think it is a good idea, Sen. McConnell? "Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) rejected the five-year freeze in domestic discretionary spending as not doing enough to rein in spending. 'I did find his suggestion on spending reductions completely inadequate,' McConnell said on MSNBC. 'And I think we are bound for some disagreements on the issue of reducing our annual debt.'"

Jim Capretta, former assistant director of OMB, says that aside from all the other ObamaCare costs, massive numbers may be dumped into the insurance exchanges.

Aside from the congressional attacks on ObamaCare, the Fourth Circuit just granted the Virginia attorney general's motion for an expedited hearing on the ruling finding the individual mandate unconstitutional.

Obama has problems aside from the Republicans. "Dismissing President Barack Obama's opposition to earmarks as 'an applause line,' Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told NBC News on Wednesday that the president should 'back off' and let lawmakers continue to direct spending to their home districts."

Aside from making it harder to consult with colleagues and leadership, what possible purpose does this serve? "Similar to how lawmakers convened during the State of the Union address, lawmakers should no longer sit according to party in the Senate chamber, a centrist Democratic senator said Wednesday. Sen. Ben Nelson (Neb.) said that eliminating the Senate's traditional partisan seating arrangement would be meaningful first step in fostering better cooperation between Republicans and Democrats." Thunk.

Aside from a piddling reduction of $400 billion over five years in discretionary spending and slashing defense, what is Obama going to do about it? "New budget estimates Wednesday paint a grim picture of the nation's fiscal state, with the government on pace to rack-up back-to-back deficits totaling $2.58 trillion over the life of this new Congress. . . . The report, following so quickly on the president's State of the Union address, also underscores concerns from moderates in both parties that Obama has not yet conveyed enough urgency about the mounting debt problem."

By Jennifer Rubin  | January 27, 2011; 7:34 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Bits  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Rep. Paul Ryan 1, ObamaCare 0
Next: Virginia's Rep. Jim Moran -- beyond uncivil

Comments

"Aside from a piddling reduction of $400 billion over five years in discretionary spending and slashing defense..."

I'm a little confused... you and Reuters are reporting he is asking for $400 billion over five years, but he clearly stated $400 billion over the next TEN years. Where are you guys getting your five year number from?

Posted by: Indy82 | January 27, 2011 8:51 AM | Report abuse

"Aside from a piddling reduction of $400 billion over five years in discretionary spending and slashing defense..."

I'm a little confused... you and Reuters are reporting he is asking for $400 billion over five years, but he clearly stated $400 billion over the next TEN years. Where are you guys getting your five year number from?

Posted by: Indy82 | January 27, 2011 8:52 AM | Report abuse

"Aside from a piddling reduction of $400 billion over five years in discretionary spending and slashing defense..."

I'm a little confused... you and Reuters are reporting he is asking for $400 billion over five years, but he clearly stated $400 billion over the next TEN years. Where are you guys getting your five year number from?

Posted by: Indy82 | January 27, 2011 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Oh boy... I'm so sorry. Every time I hit the "submit" button a page would pop up saying the connection timed out, so I would try again to post the comment. Apparently it posted my comment 3 times. Can somebody take down 2 of those 3 postings? Sorry about that.

Posted by: Indy82 | January 27, 2011 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Indy82: alas, commenting in triplicate is now part of the internet memory overload.

Senator Ben Nelson should have suggested bi-partisan seating in the Senate cafeteria. There really is a problem with the partisan divide becoming so extreme that members of congress do not actually know each other as people, as they apparently did in the past.

What will happen when the Bond market takes over the budget deficit non-debate?

Posted by: K2K2 | January 27, 2011 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Ms. Rubin:

Yesterday HHS updated its website showing that almost 800 companies/unions have now been granted waivers from Obamacare provisions. That's a 3-fold increase of previously known numbers!

http://www.hhs.gov/ociio/regulations/approved_applications_for_waiver.html

But the WashPost apparently hasn't found it newsworthy. A search for "waivers" produced no recent items. Funny how we out in flyover country can now get our news HOURS before the Post can get its boots on. Shame on the Post. Surely they recognize that readers will interpret this as a biased suppression of bad news for the president...conveniently held and released AFTER the SOTU. (Most months, the waiver numbers are posted the first week of the month. This month it was the 26th.)

Posted by: jeannebee | January 27, 2011 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Sen. Ben Nelson's goofy suggestion won't protect him from the knee-capping he is going to experience in two years. Babye Ben, we hardly knew ya.

Posted by: gord2 | January 27, 2011 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Remind me again, how much is that extension of tax cuts for the rich ADDING to the deficit? People who rail about the deficit while demanding decreases in revenue need shock therapy. Using the household budget analogy that the right wingers so love, a family that voluntarily reduces its income while expecting to pay off its debt by cutting pet food expenditures is as likely to succeed as the GOP's "plans" to lower the deficit.

Posted by: fingersfly | January 27, 2011 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Remind me again, how much is that extension of tax cuts for the rich ADDING to the deficit? People who rail about the deficit while demanding decreases in revenue need shock therapy. Using the household budget analogy that the right wingers so love, a family that voluntarily reduces its income while expecting to pay off its debt by cutting pet food expenditures is as likely to succeed as the GOP's "plans" to lower the deficit.

Posted by: fingersfly | January 27, 2011 10:37 AM | Report abuse

"Remind me again, how much is that extension of tax cuts for the rich ADDING to the deficit? People who rail about the deficit while demanding decreases in revenue need shock therapy. Using the household budget analogy that the right wingers so love, a family that voluntarily reduces its income while expecting to pay off its debt by cutting pet food expenditures is as likely to succeed as the GOP's "plans" to lower the deficit."

fingersfly, The extension of the tax cuts for "the rich" (a term the Left loves to disingenuously use that includes people who are NOT rich) "cost" a whole lot less than the extension of the cuts for the middle class that Obama and the Left told us was imperative. If the deficit was the primary reason, why not support tax hikes for everyone?? Double their rates actually!

What the Left can't seem to tolerate is the idea that the money that the "rich" have is THEIR money. Bill Gates may have a zillion dollars, but it's HIS money. Aside from a basic reasonable tax, he should be able to keep the rest of it. Instead, the Left acts as though it's the govt's money and the govt is being gracious in letting people keep what they do.

The govt imposes all sorts of regulations and govt programs and agencies upon us which we don't have the money to pay for, and then the Left screams bloody murder when the citizenry doesn't meekly submit and give the govt the money the govt wants. How about we try this - the govt not spend more than it takes in!

The Left always looks to taxation first to make up a budget deficit. How about spending cuts? That's almost never mentioned. Even Obama's "plan" to "reduce" the deficit is to keep spending levels static for 5 years. For all of those years, the govt is slated to spend way more than it takes in. What a great plan!

Posted by: RitchieEmmons | January 27, 2011 12:31 PM | Report abuse

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