'Fair Shot for Everyone' Contains Details for No One

Apr 2 2014, 10:52am CDT | by

Setting a new low for lack of detail and specificity, Senate Democrats unveiled their “Fair Shot for Everyone” agenda last week. Only loosely a set of real proposals, the agenda is merely a series of talking points designed to distract voters from President Obama’s lagging approval numbers and the continuing unpopularity of the Affordable Care Act. The Fair Shot agenda makes Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman’s “Jobs for America” plan look fully developed and transparent.

At the March 27 press conference announcing their election year platform, prominent Democratic senators emphasized that although their plan was designed to proactively aid the middle class, Republicans were determined to defend a status quo skewed toward the rich and multinational corporations. Sen. Charles E. Schumer of New York argued that the press was focused too much on Obamacare, which doesn’t even affect 85 percent of Americans. “You folks all want to ask about Obamacare, but the American people, most of them, are not directly affected by Obamacare,” Schumer said. “They want to hear what we’re going to do for them.” And the Democratic plan is full of small items designed to spur turnout among their base in what is expected to be a dismal round of midterm elections for them.

Most of the Democrats’ Senate agenda is focused on nontax items. Not surprisingly, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Budget Committee Chair Patty Murray want to hold another vote on expired unemployment benefits. They will also propose a higher minimum wage. The Democrats will push for a vote on equal pay for women, something they know will fail. Expect that to be held on April 8 (which has been dubbed “Equal Pay Day”).

Murray criticized Republicans for tinkering with the tax code instead of raising the minimum wage (which was a thinly veiled criticism of House Ways and Means Committee Chair Dave Camp’s comprehensive tax reform plan). Her main tax item is legislation to expand the earned income tax credit. The senators at the press conference railed against tax breaks for companies that locate jobs and profits overseas but, as usual, didn’t reveal what tax provisions they were talking about or how they planned to address those issues. Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan has introduced a complicated provision that limits deductions for moving jobs overseas and creates a credit for “insourcing,” but that is hardly a serious base erosion and profit-shifting proposal.

Reid did say he hoped to find bipartisan support for energy tax legislation drafted by Portman and New Hampshire Democrat Jeanne Shaheen. The majority leader might hold a vote on Missouri Republican Roy Blunt’s plan for manufacturing incentives. The goal is to show that Democratic control of the Senate can produce legislation with the support of both parties, while still protecting the Democratic base.

Tax reform observers probably expected little from Democrats this year, and that’s exactly what they got. The loss of Baucus means we won’t get something comparable to Camp’s draft. Instead, both parties have decided to cloak campaign puffery in the form of tax rhetoric and small bills that will have little chance of becoming law.

Source: Forbes Business

 
 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

A grand wedding, the key to a happy marital life
New York, Aug 27 (IANS) Call more guests to your wedding if you want your marital life to be successful.
 
 
Is your kid sipping or tasting alcohol as you drink?
New York, Aug 27 (IANS) Do you allow your growing kid to sip or taste alcohol while you enjoy the evening with friends at home or in a restaurant? He may be at the risk of becoming an early drinker.
 
 
Strong laser pulses convert glass into metal
London, Aug 27 (IANS) In what could change the future of electronics, scientists have been able to make the properties of glass behave like a metal using ultra-short laser pulses.
 
 
'Toilets key to improving child health in India'
New York, Aug 27 (IANS) Building toilets and reducing open defecation is the key to significant health benefits for young children in India, a promising study by an Indian-origin researcher shows.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

I'm a prude: Jessica Alba
Los Angeles, Aug 27 (IANS) Jessica Alba is known for her sexy screen roles and status as one of the world's most desirable women, but the actress says she is a "prude" in real life. Alba says she's really different...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
A grand wedding, the key to a happy marital life
New York, Aug 27 (IANS) Call more guests to your wedding if you want your marital life to be successful. According to a report, US citizens who had more guests at their ceremony were more likely to report high quality...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Pamela Anderson withdraws divorce plea
Los Angeles, Aug 27 (IANS) Actress Pamela Anderson, who had earlier filed for divorce from her husband Rick Salomon, has now sought a dismissal of the formal separation. In a court record, Anderson filed a petition...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Hanks to film 'Da Vinci Code' part three in 2015
Los Angeles, Aug 27 (IANS) Actor Tom Hanks and director Ron Howard are scheduled to head to Italy to shoot the third film of the "Da Vinci Code" series next year. Titled "Inferno", the film's shooting is expected to...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Is your kid sipping or tasting alcohol as you drink?
New York, Aug 27 (IANS) Do you allow your growing kid to sip or taste alcohol while you enjoy the evening with friends at home or in a restaurant? He may be at the risk of becoming an early drinker. According to a...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Shuttlers Attri-Reddy progress at Worlds
Copenhagen, Aug 27 (IANS) Indian men's doubles shuttlers Manu Attri and B. Sumeeth won their opener at the World Championships here. The duo proceeded to the second round by defeating Russian pair Nikita Khakimov and...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Kings of Leon cancels more concerts
Los Angeles, Aug 27 (IANS) Rock band Kings of Leon has decided to call off two more concerts on their Mechanical Bull tour as their injured drummer Nathan Followill needs time to recover. The band, also consisting of...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Strong laser pulses convert glass into metal
London, Aug 27 (IANS) In what could change the future of electronics, scientists have been able to make the properties of glass behave like a metal using ultra-short laser pulses. This change of material properties...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
'Full House' to return after almost two decades?
Los Angeles, Aug 27 (IANS) Popular TV show "Full House" is reportedly set to return after its season eight finale aired almost 20 years ago. "Full House", the hit ABC sitcom, ran from 1987 to 1995. A revival of the...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Fiji military to stay away from politics
Suva, Aug 27 (IANS) Fiji's military will support the elected government and accept the outcome of the 2014 general election, the Fijian military commander said Wednesday. Addressing military personnel who have just...
Read more on Politics Balla