Tales from the Trail

Congress scraps plan for new executive jets

August 11, 2009

Remember when members of Congress embarrassed auto executives who flew to Washington aboard private jets when their companies were looking for bailouts?

The First Draft: Obama’s bad news Thursday

June 18, 2009

FINANCIAL REGULATION/President Barack Obama woke up Thursday to find two new polls — the NBC News/Wall Street Journal and CBS News/New York Times — showing growing public concerns over the high rate of government spending and ballooning federal deficits.

Obama’s 2010 budget: A book with a villain?

February 26, 2009

Any good book needs a villain, and President Barack Obama’s 2010 budget was quick to try to identify one.
It was right on the title page above the words 2010 Budget: “A New Era of Responsibility.”
Take that, George W. Bush.
“For too long our budget has not told the whole truth about how precious tax dollars are spent,” Obama said in remarks ahead of the release of his $3.55 trillion spending blueprint, which projected a huge $1.17 trillion deficit.
“Large sums have been left off the books, including the true cost of fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. And that kind of dishonest accounting is not how you run your family budgets at home. It’s not how your government should run its budgets either,” he said.
A senior official at the White House budget office, speaking anonymously, jumped on the bandwagon.
“We’ve inherited a real mess, both fiscally — a trillion dollar deficit — as well as an economic issue, which is severe economic downturn,” the official said. “These are the result of a profound irresponsibility, misplaced priorities and mistaken policies.”OBAMA/BUDGET
Hostile fire rarely goes unanswered.
“Trying to mask huge spending increases under the cloak of ‘fiscal responsibility’ is the height of audacity,” said Tony Fratto, Bush’s former White House spokesman specializing on economic issues.
“Our budgets were honest, open and transparent. Every dime spent was presented, debated, voted on and counted.”
“Putting temporary war spending in supplemental budgets was done to avoid permanently baking those appropriations into the Defense Department’s baseline budget,” Fratto added.