American Morning

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September 20th, 2011
01:57 PM ET

Is Obama's deficit plan dead on arrival? Rep. Jeff Flake weighs in

This morning, President Obama and Republicans are squaring off over how to reduce the national deficit after President Obama unveiled his plan in a speech at the Rose Garden yesterday.

At the heart of Obama's proposal is $1.5 trillion dollars in new revenue generated largely by higher taxes on the wealthiest Americans, a proposal strongly opposed by GOP leaders who insist that any tax increase will undermine an already shaky economy.

Representative Jeff Flake is one of the Republicans in the House that opposes Obama's plan. Flake speaks with Carol Costello on American Morning today to discuss reducing the national deficit and to weigh in on how to create jobs in America.

"We're not out of the woods yet and if we want the economy to grow, we have to have competitive tax rates plus some kind of moratorium on regulation," Flake says. "If we want to create jobs, the last thing you want to do is slap another tax or a higher tax on capital gains or dividends."

Filed under: Deficit • Politics • Taxes
September 19th, 2011
10:28 AM ET

How much money will Obama's 'Buffett Tax' generate and will it make a real difference to the deficit?

This afternoon, President Obama will propose a "Buffett Tax" on people making more than $1 million a year as a part of his deficit recommendations to Congress, intended to generate $1.5 trillion dollars in new revenue, the majority of which will come from high-income households.

Obama's plan details that $800 billion will come from letting Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy expire, and another $400 billion will come from capping the value of itemized deductions and other exemptions for high-income housholds. The final $300 billion will come from closing loopholes that benefit oil and gas companies, private jet owners, and investment fund managers.

Jay Powell, Treasury Under Secretary under President George H.W. Bush, discusses the effectiveness of Obama's proposal on American Morning today and weighs in on whether or not the "Buffet Tax" is likely to make a real difference in the national deficit.

Filed under: Deficit • Politics • Taxes
September 19th, 2011
10:11 AM ET

Could Obama's new tax plan really incite 'class warfare?' John Avlon and Errol Louis discuss

President Obama will unveil a plan today to cut the deficit by $3 trillion over the next decade. A large part of the proposal is expected to be based on raising taxes on Americans making more than $1 million a year.

Yesterday, Senator Lindsay Graham said that the President's tax plan would create "class warfare."

Today on American Morning, CNN contributors John Avlon and Errol Louis respond to this comment and explain the President's proposal. They also discuss their new book, "Deadline Artists: America's Greatest Newspaper Columns," in which they offer a compilation of iconic newspaper columns from legends like Hunter S. Thompson, Art Buchwald and William F. Buckley.

Filed under: Books • Deficit • Politics
August 8th, 2011
10:32 AM ET

Standard & Poor's Beers: 'We stand by our decisions' to downgrade U.S. debt

WASHINGTON (CNNMoney) - Standard & Poor's, the credit rating agency that lowered the grade on the federal government's credit worthiness, continued its defense of its move Monday, calling Washington criticism a "smoke screen."

"This idea that we made a $2 trillion error is simply a smoke screen for the unhappiness, in our view, about our decision," said David Beers, S&P's global head of sovereign ratings, in an interview with Ali Velshi and Christine Romans on CNN's "America Morning."

In talking to CNN, Beers took particular issue with criticisms made by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner on Sunday, when he told NBC that the agency they "drew exactly the wrong conclusion."

Beers pointed out that even Geithner acknowledged the harm done to the U.S. reputation, when leaders took until the last possible minute to come to a deal, and that the U.S. remains on an unsustainable path.

"So it seems that the Treasury isn't challenging the analysis both on the political side and on the fiscal side. They're just unhappy with the downgrade, but we stand by our decision," Beers said.

Beers talked to CNN about further downgrade possibilities, saying there is a 1-in-3 chance the United States could be downgraded again in the next six to 24 months.

See the rest of the interview here.

Filed under: Budget • Credit rating • Debt • Deficit • Downgrade
August 3rd, 2011
11:19 AM ET

Debt bill enacted yesterday – what's next?

President Obama signed the emergency debt ceiling legislation into law yesterday just hours before a midnight deadline to get a deal done.

The measure provides an immediate $400 billion increase in the $14.3 trillion U.S. borrowing limit, with $500 billion more assured this fall. Later this year, a special bipartisan 'supercommittee' will come together to draft legislation to find up to $1.5 trillion more in deficit cuts.

Today on American Morning, Kiki McLean, Democratic strategist, and Margaret Hoover, author of "American Individualism: How a New Generation of Conservatives Can Save the Republican Party," join Christine Romans to discuss how the American public reacted to negotiations and where lawmakers will go from here.

Filed under: Budget • Debt • Debt ceiling • Deficit
August 2nd, 2011
11:12 AM ET

Rep. Walsh and Rep. Kucinich explain why they voted no on debt deal

The House of Representatives passed a bill to raise the nation's debt-ceiling while imposing sweeping spending cuts yesterday on a 269-161 vote, overcoming opposition from liberal Democrats and tea party conservatives for ideologically different reasons.

Representative Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) and Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) are two lawmakers who voted against the bill.

They join Carol Costello on American Morning today to discuss their decision and to weigh in on the political compromise.

Filed under: Budget • Debt • Debt ceiling • Deficit • Politics
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