TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Five Challenges for Obama’s Tough Second-Term

Tax Vox Blog:  Five Challenges for Obama’s Tough Second-Term, by Howard Gleckman:

Barack Obama has pulled off the easy part. He got re-elected. Now, he faces a second term full of painful choices. ... Here is what is likely to happen with five major domestic issues:

  1. The Fiscal Cliff
  2. The 2001-2010 Tax Cuts
  3. Tax Reform
  4. Medicare and Medicaid
  5. Health Reform

The biggest question for the next couple of years is not about Obama, however. It is about congressional Republicans. Will they respond to yesterday’s defeat by doubling down on their no new taxes pledge? Or will they accept a fiscal grand bargain that includes both tax hikes and serious efforts to slow the growth of Medicare and Medicaid. If they do, it is a good bet that Obama will meet them somewhere in the middle.

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This seems wrong. The GOP doesn't need to negotiate with the President at all. To date, the President has signed every bill sent his way, including laws he campaigned against, and hasn't involved himself with crafting legislation on Capitol Hill. (His greenbook is notable for how none of it was enacted.) The GOP must make a deal with Senate Democrats, not him; "it is a [very] good bet" that the President will sign whatever they deliver.

Posted by: Yo Gabba Gabba | Nov 7, 2012 3:42:05 PM