April 25 - April 16, 2007 Pork Barrel: Congress enacting...

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April 16, 2007 Pork Barrel: Congress enacting statutes which provide for construction projects in their districts. Way for members to secure votes in their district. Natioanl Benefit of these projects is dubious. Congressional Earmarks: Statues authorizing agencies to hand out money and grants to institutions/organizations which will help the economy and benefit the nation. The national Science Foundation provides funding to scientists that conduct all types of research. A clause/provision that stipulates a certain amount of money must be given to certain University/institution/etc. (i.e. National Science Foundation must give certain amount to the University of Iowa, as stipulated by Iowa representative). These two practices have increased greatly over the past two decades, especially under a Republican Congress and Bush, in which Bush only has cast one veto against such practices. Presidential Veto can get rid of, and, traditionally kept kept Congress from going overboard with these practices. o Bridge to Nowhere (see older notes) Deficit spending took off during 1970s, over stimulating the economy and causing inflation and interest rates to go out of control. Misery Index High Interest rates High Inflation High Unemployment Ronald Reagan, Bush I, Bush II created huge deficits because of tax cuts and increased military spending (but also cut into social spending). Prior to the 1980s, Democrats would cite economists Keynes that deficits stimulated economy and created jobs. When deficits were occurring at expense of Democrat programs, Democrats changed their stance. Government bonds and securities used to cover difference between money taken and spent. Argument that deficit would slow economy because it would raise interest rates and make it harder for businesses to borrow money. Gramm-Rudman Act- Providing that any bill which increases deficit Spending must cut half from social and half from military spending. Budget Enforcement Act PAYGO In 2001-2002 Democrats proposed renewing Budget Enforcement Act to stop deficit spending by Republican Congress and Republican Bush Administration. Congressional Budget Office Static v. Dynamic Belief in cutting taxes stimulates the economy Belief by Republicans that Budget office was biased against tax cuts and did not take into account belief that cutting taxes would stimulate economy Record deficits by Bush Administration Unemployment rate at historically low levels-treasurey collecting more money from revenue because of increased economic activity
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Federal deficit has continued because spending is not cut Also, very large trade deficits—Import more than Export. Dynamic Scoring
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April 25 - April 16, 2007 Pork Barrel: Congress enacting...

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