Missouri's two U.S. senators are taking opposite positions on whether to raise taxes on the wealthy as part of a solution to the so-called fiscal cliff facing the economy.
Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill said Wednesday that she supports President Barack Obama's insistence that top income-earners should face higher tax rates. But Republican Sen. Roy Blunt said he opposes increasing the tax rates for anyone.
The divide between Missouri's senators is emblematic of the stalemate in Washington.
A liberal think-tank closely allied with the Obama administration is proposing a health care spending plan it says could save hundreds of billions of dollars in entitlement spending without hurting middle- and low-income patients.
Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 5:46 pm
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
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And I'm Audie Cornish.
As the White House and Congress debate taxes and entitlement reform, an influential liberal think-tank is offering what appears to be an olive branch. It comes at a time when many Democrats are trying to protect entitlements, such as Medicare. At the same time, Republicans say those entitlements are too expensive in their present form.
In Coney Island, on the southern end of Brooklyn, long lines of EMS trucks and buses of National Guardsmen rolled down the roads this week — trekking from residential building to building.
Since Friday, dozens of troops and officials from the City Health Department have been dropping in at the hardest hit areas of New York, making sure all residents are equipped with the essentials: Do they have food? Water? Do they need medical attention?
Political leaders from the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast have not been shy about their intent to seek as much federal funding as possible for their storm-struck states. Damages and lost economic activity as a result of Hurricane Sandy have been estimated as high as $50 billion.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, D-N.Y., wants $30 billion in federal assistance to help rebuild his state. This request, and others, come at a time when Congress is already consumed with reducing the deficit.
President Obama sounds like he's in for a fight over the woman who could be the next secretary of state. Republicans have been blasting U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice for the way she characterized the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11.
But the president came to her defense in his news conference Wednesday afternoon.
"When they go after the U.N. ambassador, apparently because they think she's an easy target, then they've got a problem with me," he told reporters.