Budget and economic news roundup

December 22, 2010

Here’s a roundup of this morning’s must-read budget and economic stories:

Yesterday Congress approved a 10-week continuing resolution that will keep the federal government funded (at fiscal year 2010 spending levels) until March 4. Politico notes “House Republicans opted out of supporting the measure, insisting that more cuts were needed immediately and forcing a surprisingly partisan 193-165 vote even in the face of a threatened government shutdown.” Senate Republicans voted for the measure, but as The Hill concludes, this bill “sets up a certain partisan battle early next year over federal spending [and] deficit reduction.”

It’s official: the government added more than $2 trillion to its deficit in 2010. According to Reuters, the Financial Report of the United States … showed the government’s liabilities exceeded assets by $13.473 trillion. That compared with a $11.456 trillion gap a year earlier.”

Bloomberg reports states are cutting Medicaid benefits in an effort to deal with their deficits.

Ezra Klein at the The Washington Post previews President Obama’s State of the Union, noting a rumor that the President may include cuts to Social Security in his outline.

National Review touches on an issue we’ve discussed several times this year: uncertainty among business owners about what is happening in Washington, and how it affects the economy.

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