Morning Examiner: Obama has no plan

Politics,Beltway Confidential,Conn Carroll

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio., a former director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, released a study yesterday, showing that the United States Department of Treasury will reach its statutory borrowing limit well before election day.

Specifically, the study noted that President Obama’s budget projects total U.S. debt will reach $16.334 trillion by September 30, 2012. This is just $60 billion below the 16,394,000,000,000 debt limit set just last August. Since the federal government is adding to the national debt at a rate of $132 billion a month, the debt ceiling should be around October 15th. The $100 billion payroll tax cut set to be passed today will only accelerate this time-line.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner will undoubtedly make every effort to bend the law so that Obama will not need to ask Congress to raise the debt limit before election day. But it will be close. More importantly, however, the speed with which Obama blew through this current debt limit should cause his administration to pause and think about our long-term debt crisis. Unfortunately, the opposite appears to be the case.

Testifying before the House Budget Committee yesterday, Geithner admitted that the Obama administration has no plan to control the debt. “We’re not coming before you to say we have a definitive solution to that long-term problem,” Geithner told Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis. “What we do know is we don’t like yours.”

That is Obama’s entire governing record in just one statement: we have no plan, we just don’t like yours. This kind of lazy and vindictive thinking is turning our country into Greece faster than anyone previously imagined possible.

Campaign 2012
GOP Field: The March 1st CNN debate scheduled to be held in Georgia before the Super Tuesday primary has been canceled after both Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum announced they would not attend the event.

Santorum: Retired mutual fund manager Foster Friess, the billionaire who funds the Super PAC supporting Rick Santorum, stunned MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell with an off-color joke about birth control yesterday. “This contraception thing, my gosh, it’s so inexpensive,” Friess said. “You know, back in my days, they’d use Bayer aspirin for contraceptives. The gals put it between their knees and it wasn’t that costly.”

Obama: President Obama “spent an entire day hopscotching some of California’s fanciest neighborhoods” yesterday, on his way to raising more than $8 million for his reelection campaign.

Mass. Senate: Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., leads Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren by nine points, according to a Suffolk University/WHDH-TV poll released yesterday.

Around the Bigs
U.S. News, Longest Period of High Unemployment Since Great Depression: After three years with unemployment topping 8 percent, the U.S. has seen the longest period of high unemployment since the Great Depression, the Congressional Budget Office noted in a report issued today.

The Washington Examiner, GOP senators offer Medicare reform plan: Sens. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., and Richard Burr, R-N.C., introduced to quickly and drastically reform Medicare. Their Senior’s Choice Act would reduce Medicare costs by raising the beneficiaries’ eligibility age, increasing co-pays for the wealthy, and allowing people to opt out and use competing private health care plans instead.

The New York Times, The Buffett Tax Rule Is Really More of a Guideline: President Obama may have made the “Buffett Rule” the centerpiece of his campaign for “fairness,” but it is not found anywhere in the budget he released Monday. The White House says it is more of a “guideline” than actual public policy.

The Wall Street Journal, The Crash of California’s Top Earners: California’s continued budget problems are being driven by their highly progressive tax which makes them dependent on the very rich for revenue. The incomes of California’s top one-percenters have declined the most of any income class in the state.

The Economist, Flaws in the confused, bloated law passed in the aftermath of America’s financial crisis become ever more apparent: The Economist takes an in depth look at why Dodd-Frank is great for lawyers and lobbyists, but terrible for banking system stability.

CNN, Half oppose Obama birth control insurance plan: Half of all Americans say they oppose the Obama administration’s new policy concerning employer-provided health insurance plans and their coverage of contraceptive services for female employees including those at religiously affiliated institutions, according to a new national survey.

Righty Playbook
The Atlantic‘s Megan McArdle exposes the supposed leaked Heartland Institute strategy memo as a fraud.

AEI‘s James Pethokoukis posts a graph showing how the national debt will expand forever upward under Obama’s budget.

The Heritage Foundation‘s Nick Loris explains why targeted energy tax credits aren’t consistent with conservatism or the free market.

Lefty Playbook
ThinkProgress reports that Democratic women boycotted yesterday’s House religious freedom hearing after Republicans prevented any women from testifying.

The Washington Post‘s Greg Sargent argues that Republican efforts to fight Obama’s abortion-drug mandate is a new Terri Schiavo moment.

Taegan Goddard posts a new DNC ad attacking Mitt Romney for letting GM and Chrysler go bankrupt.

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