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  • Line-item veto would help slash wasteful spending
    Posted in Commentary on December 1, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Taxes, Economy / Financial

    In Wisconsin, congressional leaders have a long tradition of putting partisanship aside to solve problems. In recent years, I’ve upheld this tradition by teaming with Janesville native and former Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold to advance legislation providing the president with a line-item veto to cut wasteful spending from the federal government’s bloated budget. It’s a straightforward concept that has received bipartisan support, and I was encouraged to introduce it again earlier this week with... Read more

  • Inequality, Opportunity and The American Idea
    Posted in Commentary on November 17, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Entitlements: Health Care / Social Security , Taxes, Economy / Financial

    The economic hardships brought about by the financial crisis and the weak recovery have reopened our longstanding national debate over the meaning of the proposition that we are all created equal. In the Founders' vision, the self-evident truth of this belief guaranteed all Americans equal rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. To Abraham Lincoln, who led America at a time when this belief was most gravely threatened, it meant the equality of opportunity — "the promise that in du... Read more

  • 900 Days Since Senate Democrats Offered Budget Plan Is National Disgrace
    Posted in Commentary on October 14, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy / Financial

    America is greatly in need of strong, competent leadership. Our nation’s total debt is now larger than our entire economy. Unemployment is painfully high and growth is painfully slow. Since taking office, the president has accelerated Washington’s reckless spending spree, has added trillions of dollars to the debt, and has refused to present a credible plan to put Washington’s fiscal house in order. Meanwhile, Congress is divided. Republicans control the House, Democrats the Senate. As required ... Read more

  • Solyndra Deal Violates 'Fundamental Laws of Economics'
    Posted in Commentary on September 22, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Energy

    This month, as President Obama pressed Congress to pass another misguided “stimulus” proposal, the consequences of the administration’s first $800 billion stimulus law are becoming painfully clear. High unemployment and anemic growth are serving as constant reminders of the president’s broken promises on the economy. Consider Solyndra, the now-bankrupt California solar panel company, which was once the poster child of the administration’s “green jobs” initiative. Solyndra is proving to be Exhib... Read more

  • Where's Your Budget, Mr. President?
    Posted in Commentary on August 3, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Entitlements: Health Care / Social Security , Taxes, Economy / Financial

    During the negotiations over raising the debt ceiling, President Obama reportedly warned Republican leaders not to call his bluff by sending him a bill without tax increases. Republicans in Congress ignored this threat and passed a bill that cuts more than a dollar in spending for every dollar it increases the debt limit, without raising taxes. Yesterday, Mr. Obama signed this bill into law. He was, as he said, bluffing. Nevertheless, the president still hasn't shown us his cards. He still hasn'... Read more

  • A Response to Gene Sperling
    Posted in Commentary on August 2, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Taxes, Economy / Financial

    Moments ago, the President signed into law a significant bipartisan step forward in getting Washington’s fiscal house in order. Relative to the magnitude of our budget challenges, the spending cuts are modest. But judged against Washington’s dismal track record of fiscal stewardship over the years, the Budget Control Act marks a major change in the culture of spending that is driving our nation to the brink of a debt-fueled economic crisis. While far from perfect, the Budget Control Act achieves... Read more

  • Health care reform key to tackling debt crisis
    Posted in Commentary on July 31, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Entitlements: Health Care / Social Security , Economy / Financial

    The debate over raising the statutory debt ceiling has accomplished little but revealed much about the unwillingness of many in Washington to face up to our generation’s most pressing challenges. At the heart of the gridlock is a deep disagreement over the role that out-of-control government spending plays in our current predicament — and nowhere is this disagreement more strongly expressed than in the debate over the government’s role in health care. One approach has been enshrined into law by ... Read more

  • A Step Forward, But Long Journey Remains
    Posted in Commentary on July 26, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy / Financial

    The Budget Control Act takes an important step in the right direction by cutting $1.2 trillion in government spending over the next decade. Critically, it does this without resorting to Senator Reid’s gimmicks and without imposing the president’s preferred tax increases on American families and the struggling economy. This bill is far from perfect. We still have a long way to go toward getting the key drivers of our debt — especially federal health-care spending — under control. But considering ... Read more

  • Jobs and the Punting of Responsibility
    Posted in Commentary on July 8, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy / Financial

    Today’s shocking jobs report represents a modern record of 29 straight months with unemployment above 8 percent, and falls on the 800th day since congressional Democrats have passed a budget. This report is more proof that job creation in America is nowhere near where it needs to be for a strong recovery to occur, and that immediate action is needed to change course. Reports recently issued by the House Budget Committee and the minority staff of the Senate Budget Committee demonstrate that the f... Read more

  • Avoiding the Credit Cliff
    Posted in Commentary on June 22, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Entitlements: Health Care / Social Security , Economy / Financial

    The shadow of an oncoming debt crisis is hindering job growth today and threatening our fiscal and economic future. The latest warning came today from “The Long-Term Budget Outlook,” an annual report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) which details the state of the nation’s finances. This year’s news is grim. We are on the verge of leaving the next generation with an unsustainable debt burden and a less prosperous nation. According to economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, who ha... Read more