Goodbye, Big Tax Cut. Hello, Smaller Debt. ; Republicans on Hill, Unlike Presidential Candidates, Shift Emphasis To

By Ann Scott Tyson, | The Christian Science Monitor, January 12, 2000 | Go to article overview

Goodbye, Big Tax Cut. Hello, Smaller Debt. ; Republicans on Hill, Unlike Presidential Candidates, Shift Emphasis To


Ann Scott Tyson,, The Christian Science Monitor


Coming off a failed effort last year to win a huge tax cut for Americans, congressional Republicans are back in town with a new fiscal message for this year: Let's reduce the national debt.

That, of course, is the same as saying, "Let's not do much," because any unused portions of the federal budget surplus automatically default to paying down the $3.7 trillion publicly held debt.

Still, Republicans on the Hill call their debt-reduction plan "significant," and say it won't preclude cutting taxes.

But, in a clear shift in strategy, the bite-size, targeted cuts they are proposing for this year are minuscule compared with last year's tax-cut banquet - and are even far smaller than cuts being proposed by GOP presidential front-runner George W. Bush.

What all this portends, say many Congress-watchers, is a year of modest legislative accomplishment, as lawmakers delay some of the hard issues until a new president is elected.

"Debt retirement is the default position," says Stephen Moore, fiscal-policy director for the Cato Institute here. "It's an indication that they don't have a very bold or exciting agenda for this year."

So far, neither the Republican leaders of Congress nor the White House and Democrats have launched the new year with bold policy initiatives.

"If this is what you are leading with, you know there will be no big proposals up ahead," says Stanley Collender of the federal budget consulting group at Fleishman-Hillard Inc., a Washington public-relations firm.

Nibbling around the edges

Prospects for major legislative compromises in a short congressional session (starting Jan. 24 and ending in early October) are also dim as each party focuses on the coming election. The GOP is only five seats from losing control of the House of Representatives.

"Republicans want to get out of town as early as possible to campaign," says Mr. Moore.

As a result, analysts predict continued stasis on Capitol Hill, with Republicans tinkering with small tax cuts while mounting a rear- guard battle against White House spending proposals.

The White House agenda includes a new proposal for $1.3 billion in loans and grants to renovate schools. The rest of the Democrats' wish list is largely unfinished business from last year, including health-care insurance reforms, gun control, and raising the minimum wage. President Clinton will formally unveil his fiscal 2001 budget next month.

Republicans will focus on improving trade ties with China and WTO membership, high-tech issues such as digital signatures, and - most notably - greatly scaled-back tax cuts.

Backing away from a big tax cut may be a pragmatic move for the GOP. Last year's $792 billion, 10-year package, which Mr. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Goodbye, Big Tax Cut. Hello, Smaller Debt. ; Republicans on Hill, Unlike Presidential Candidates, Shift Emphasis To
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.