Bloomberg: “Republican Leaders Voted for Debt Drivers They Blame on Obama”

What do you know, some journalists actually do their job:

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Yet the speaker, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell all voted for major drivers of the nation’s debt during the past decade: Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts and Medicare prescription drug benefits. They also voted for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, that rescued financial institutions and the auto industry.
Together, a Bloomberg News analysis shows, these initiatives added $3.4 trillion to the nation’s accumulated debt and to its current annual budget deficit of $1.5 trillion.

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The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have cost almost $1.3 trillion since the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, according to a March 29 analysis by the Congressional Research Service. Operations in Iraq have cost $806 billion, and in Afghanistan $444 billion. The analysis shows the government has spent an additional $29 billion for enhanced security on militia bases and $6 billion remains unallocated.
Medicare Drug Benefit
The 2003 Medicare prescription program approved by President George W. Bush and a Republican-dominated Congress has cost $369 billion over a 10-year time frame, less than initially projected by Medicare actuaries.
Nine Senate Republicans, including Nebraska’s Chuck Hagel, along with 25 Republicans in the House, voted against the bill. Hagel argued that it failed to control costs and would add trillions in debt for future generations.
“Republicans used to believe in fiscal responsibility,” Hagel wrote in a 2003 editorial in the Omaha World Herald. “We have lost our way.”
TARP, the $700-billion bailout of banks, insurance and auto companies, has cost less than expected. McConnell, Boehner, Cantor and Ryan all voted in October 2008 for the program, which stoked the rise of the Tea Party movement.
Many institutions have repaid the government. The latest estimated lifetime cost of the program is $49.33 billion, according to a June 2011 report by the Treasury Department. That figure includes the $45.61 billion cost of a housing program which the administration never expected to recoup.
Rank-and-file Republicans are eager to pin the blame on Democrats, frequently pointing to the economic stimulus signed by Obama in 2009. The total cost of the stimulus will be $830 billion by 2019, according to a May 2011 Congressional Budget Office report.
That’s half the cost of the Bush tax cuts and less than two-thirds of what has been spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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PBO and VPB visited the Norwegian embassy on Tuesday to pay respects in wake of deadly terror attacks in Oslo.

“The president was not going to walk away from all these workers”

Hi guys,

PBO is finishing his Europe trip today, so VP Joe Biden is guest starring in this Weekly Address, and doing a terrific job. What a brilliant choice this man was.

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Couple of good things to read:

Turning FEMA Around: Has Obama saved the once-maligned federal agency?

Pssst. Health Care Reform Is Moving Forward

You hear a lot about state officials trying to fight the Affordable Care Act, whether by challenging it in the federal courts or refusing to implement its provisions. But plenty of states officials are enthusiastic about the law. And perhaps none are moving as quickly, or effectively, to follow through on the law as Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley.

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OFA is well on the move:
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And I really like photo:
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“600,000 young adults have taken advantage of healthcare reform” (Updated)

Some pretty cool stuff:

Repeal this: 

Some 600,000 young adults have taken advantage of a healthcare reform provision allowing them to stay on their parents’ insurance policies, according to a new report from the Commonwealth Fund.

The liberal think tank said young adults are increasingly delaying care because they can’t afford it and praised the healthcare law’s coverage expansion.

Close to half of all currently uninsured people between 19 and 29 will gain coverage under Medicaid once it expands in 2014, the report says. About one-third will be eligible for subsidies to buy private insurance through a newly created health exchange.

“To ensure a more stable future for graduates and their families, it is critical that federal and state policymakers continue implementing all provisions of the Affordable Care Act over the next three years,” the Commonwealth Fund said.

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 Take some time and watch this  VP Biden‘s speech. It’s just terrific. The stuff he said about PBO is so wonderful, it almost brought me to tears.  (Start around the 20:00 mark).

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The Independentreview of PBO’s extraordinary speech yesterday:

In a spirit of unyielding optimism neatly combined with a message of hard-headed pragmatism, Barack Obama has insisted that the time for American and European leadership “is now” in spite of the rise of new global superpowers. He was the first United States president to address MPs and peers in Westminster Hall and received a standing ovation before he began his speech, which covered issues such as foreign policy, economic development and international security.

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A reader writes to Sullivan:

It is in reality a Republican line of PR right now, so unless in a few months we see the number of Jewish supporters drop precipitously we have NO idea what is really going on in the background except for the stories being shopped by the WSJ and Commentary about Obama’s Jewish doom. Really, you’re repeating these stories without skepticism when there is an agenda there? Why not write about the countless Jews who after seeing Netanyahu insult their president on US soil are actually more and more supportive of a Palestinian state than they were before. While this is anecdotal I can tell you that people of my generation–30-45–are disgusted and ready to throw in the towel on Israel, and I’m a hard-core Zionist who lived in Israel, speaks Hebrew and lost friends to terrorist attacks.

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