Tax the Rich Aspect of Jobs Bill Punted to Super Committee


Peter Morici, professor of international business at the University of Maryland and former chief economist with the U.S. International Trade Commission said the tax increases are not likely to pass Congress because of opposition in both parties.

"He is booting a lot to the special committee and they're not going to come up with any immediate cuts acceptable to anybody," Morici said. "He would do is make it more difficult to balance the budget down the road."

Morici said he is waiting to hear how the president will tackle cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. During Obama's speech Thursday, he said he advocated "making modest adjustments to health care programs like Medicare and Medicaid."

"If you do all things outlined here, what good will the jobs plan have? What good would it do to spend more on school teachers and pay less on hospitals?" Morici said.

David Stockman, President Reagan's former budget director, said he agreed on targeting those particular deductions, but more is needed in the greater scheme of the nation's economic health.

"Yes, we should cap deductions for the affluent, cancel tax giveaways to the oil companies and make the hedge fund tycoons pay the same tax rate as their chauffeurs," Stockman said. "But all of that money and much more is needed for deficit reduction…"

Phillip Swagel, former assistant secretary for economic policy at the Treasury Department from 2006 to 2009 and former chief of staff at the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said the proposed limits on tax deductions are already widely understood to be part of the discussion, "so those are not available as new revenue to pay for the President's proposals."

"That money, if there is any agreement on it, would go to the committee's original work. The other proposals are symbolic ones meant to send a partisan message," Swagel, now professor in international economic policy at the Maryland School of Public Policy, said.

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