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Frustration at the Cliff


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"I am not one who pays very close attention to polls, but some recent public opinion research indicates the American people are frustrated with the pace of negotiations on a legislative approach to avoid the massive tax increases and budget cuts that will take effect in two weeks -- the so-called "fiscal cliff.'

"I must admit that I share that frustration. I applaud President Obama and House Speaker Boehner for "talking.' But real negotiation requires a healthy dose of "give and take' and I am not sure that's happening right now.

"Both sides have acknowledged that additional revenues coming in to the Treasury must be part of the answer. However, there seems to be the perception that boosting income tax rates on the wealthiest of Americans will address America's deficit and debt problems.

"I've attached a copy of Senator Rob Portman's op-ed that appeared Wall Street Journal this week. I recommend that you read it and share it with your family and friends. The piece gets a little "wonky,' but after all, Senator Portman used to be the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Among his important points, Sen. Portman reports that "raising taxes on the well-off would pay for nine days of spending.'

"This fact makes my point (again): the United States does not have a deepening debt crisis because Americans are taxed too little; we have a debt crisis because our federal government spends too much!

"Unfortunately, both sides in the fiscal cliff "talks' have not reached this same conclusion. That's why many of us are frustrated."

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