"The rate of unemployment in the United States has exceeded 8 percent since February 2009, making the past three years the longest stretch of high unemployment in this country since the Great Depression. Moreover, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that the unemployment rate will remain above 8 percent until 2014. The official unemployment rate excludes those individuals who would like to work but have not searched for a job in the past four weeks as well as those who are working part-time but would prefer full-time work; if those people were counted among the unemployed, the unemployment rate in January 2012 would have been about 15 percent. Compounding the problem of high unemployment, the share of unemployed people looking for work for more than six months--referred to as the long-term unemployed--topped 40 percent in December 2009 for the first time since 1948, when such data began to be collected; it has remained above that level ever since."
Wow. Just... wow. I still wonder how people actually think things are getting better.
The United States Department of Treasury will reach the the statutory limit it is allowed to borrow money before election day, according to a new study by Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio., former director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.
"Following the contentious debt ceiling last August, President Obama promised that he would take action to address the country's fiscal crisis. He has failed to do that," Portman said. "In fact, his new budget increases spending and projects that Washington will be hitting the debt ceiling again in mid-October -- burning through a $2.1 trillion debt limit increase in just over 14 months."
Portman's office notes that according to Obama's budget, total debt subject to the statutory debt will reach limit will reach $16.334 trillion by September 30, 2012. This is just $60 billion below the 16,394,000,000 debt limit. Since the federal government is adding to the national debt at a rate of $132 billion a month, the debt ceiling is on schedule to be reached by October 15, 2012.
" This is an unfortunate but clear signal to the American people that Washington is spending too much, borrowing too much, and putting our nation's fiscal stability at risk," Portman said.
Talk about the major issue being brought to the forfront right during the home stretch. If the Republicans had any brains, they would be planning a major media blitz on this and their plans to fix it.
'Post' obtains letter in which leading House Republicans express concern with "record-low support" for Israeli missile defense.
Two leading Republicans chastised US President Barack Obama B.O.... for cutting missile defense funding to Israel in the 2013 budget, in a letter released on Wednesday.
"We are deeply concerned that at a time of rising threats to our strongest ally in the Middle East, the administration is requesting record-low support for this vital defense cooperation program," wrote Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Rep. Buck McKeon of Caliphornia, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
The new White House budget request reduces funding in this area from $106 million for this year to $99m. in 2013. The authors noted that Congress ended up more than doubling the 2012 administration request to $215m.
Democratic Hill sources have told the Post that they anticipate a similar congressional increase in funding for 2013, wiping out any reduction.
The White House did not immediately react to the letter, but referred the Post to a White House website post by Jarrod Bernstein, director of Jewish outreach, in which he wrote, "Informed by our ongoing high-level security dialogue with key Israeli defense and intelligence officials, the president has requested unprecedented support for Israel, even in a challenging fiscal climate." Obama's budget includes a record-high $3.1 billion in military assistance to Israel in addition to the missile defense spending.
"The fact is that the president submitted to Congress on Monday the largest White House budget request for foreign military assistance for Israel ever," said National Jewish Democratic Council President David Harris. "But it's not just the largest for Israel. It's the largest foreign military assistance request for any country in history."
Harris described the White House request and the anticipated congressional boosting for missile defense as consistent with the practice of former president George W. Bush, a Republican.
"I'm aware that there's a $6m. piece of pain," Harris said, but added, "This is only the first step in the process and I'm confident that President B.O. will ensure that Israel gets every dollar it needs for missile defense."