| March 4, 2014, 11:40 a.m.
President Barack Obama’s budget for fiscal 2015 is perhaps his most realistic to date. Grand bargains are out. Grand new proposals are out, too.
| March 3, 2014, 11:04 a.m.
Acrimony has become one of Washington’s defining characteristics. For almost the entirety of President Obama’s tenure, the legislative and executive branches have been at bitter odds, failing to seize big moments and enact legislation of great substance. Unfortunately, unless someone steps forward, another opportunity could soon be lost, this time, to pass free trade agreements with allies in Europe and Asia that will open markets with nearly one billion customers to American employees and employers.
| March 3, 2014, 5 a.m.
While the United States economy continues to falter, some in Congress are standing in the way of a key trade vote that has the potential to benefit our stagnant economy.
| March 3, 2014, 4 a.m.
Almost ten years ago under President George W. Bush, Democrats in the House and Senate voted overwhelmingly against the last controversial free trade agreement to come before Congress, the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA). Now leading Democrats in Congress are threatening to deny or delay, giving President Obama the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) essential to complete two of the largest free trade agreements in American history, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Partnership (TTIP). These agreements have enormous potential for creating hundreds of thousands of jobs and an almost one percent increase in U.S. GDP without adding to the deficit.
| Feb. 28, 2014, 2:14 p.m.
Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray confirmed Friday that the Senate will not move a fiscal 2015 budget resolution even as House Budget Chairman Paul D. Ryan began meetings with fellow Republicans aimed at crafting a House tax and spending blueprint for the fiscal year starting Oct. 1.
| Feb. 28, 2014, 4 a.m.
Since the gasoline shortages of the 1970s, Congress has, with only a few exceptions, barred all U.S. crude oil exports. But an energy policy that may have made sense 40 years ago no longer does. Innovative drilling techniques have spawned an oil and natural gas boom in the United States. Since oil surpluses can create as many problems as oil shortages, it’s time to eliminate those export restrictions.
| Feb. 21, 2014, 1:37 p.m.
Assessments of a proposal by Senate Democrats this month to offset the cost of extending emergency unemployment benefits by temporarily reducing companies’ pension payments won rare agreement from the right and the left.
| Feb. 21, 2014, 1:35 p.m.
The Congressional Budget Office’s dismissal of a legislated cap on war spending marks a rare case in which the nonpartisan research arm of Congress effectively tossed out an offset as essentially mistaken accounting.
| Feb. 21, 2014, 4 a.m.
Business owners know the importance of investing to keep their companies competitive. When essential equipment breaks, they fix it if they can or replace it if they can’t. They don’t respond by cutting their budget for maintenance and investment. Yet that’s what Congress has done.
| Feb. 18, 2014, 4 a.m.
What happens when a government agency adjudicates without authority, assuming Congress will simply provide forgiveness, rather than ask for permission? That is the question that is being asked this week after the Federal Trade Commission petitioned Congress for powers it does not currently have regarding data breaches and cybersecurity while already exercising the very powers they seek.
| Feb. 12, 2014, 5:37 p.m.
Twenty years ago this month, trade relations between Vietnam and the United States were restored when President Bill Clinton lifted a punishing trade embargo. This was an important step toward normalizing relations between our countries, putting our interactions on a course that continues to deepen, expand and benefit both nations.
| Feb. 4, 2014, 3:38 p.m.
The debate about lifting 1970s restrictions on crude oil exports has renewed another old fight over a 1920 maritime law known as the Jones Act.
| Feb. 4, 2014, 1:57 p.m.
The debate over lifting the nation’s restrictions on exporting crude oil centers on refinery capacity and the types of available crude, complexities that could shift if the Keystone XL pipeline is approved.
| Jan. 27, 2014, 4 a.m.
As President Barack Obama prepares to deliver his State of the Union address this week, the focus will no doubt be about generating more economic opportunity for the American worker. Consequently, both the White House and congressional Republicans have begun to approach the issue from a variety of angles and from across the political spectrum.
| Jan. 16, 2014, 4 a.m.
Rep. Charles B. Rangel, D-N.Y., recently delivered a striking rebuke of America’s energy industry (Commentary: We Ain’t Broke, Nov. 22, 2013). But his criticism provided a distorted picture of this vitally important sector of the economy.
| Jan. 13, 2014, 2:17 p.m.
If your household is like mine, you made your yearly charitable donations to a number of worthy causes last month, trying to get under the wire for the year’s tax deduction. But if the administration proposal to limit deductions passes Congress as a part of broader tax reforms, your annual contributions might actually cost more in the future. As this important conversation progresses, it is crucially important that Congress not alter the charitable contribution deduction.
| Jan. 10, 2014, 4 a.m.
The conventional wisdom is that tax reform is dead.
| Jan. 8, 2014, 1:56 p.m.
With the 50th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s declaration of a “war on poverty” triggering new congressional debates on fiscal issues, prominent members of both parties are trumpeting plans to limit poverty. For Democrats, the Wednesday anniversary is entwined with questions about income inequality, a theme the White House says it will emphasize this year.
| Dec. 17, 2013, 4 a.m.
After years in the drawing room, Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., recently released a set of drafts addressing our nation’s outdated tax code. If the early drafts’ treatment of the energy sector is any indication, small businesses inside and outside of the oil industry have reason to be on high alert.
| Dec. 11, 2013, 3:44 p.m.
With cuts to tax benefits for transit commuters set to be triggered at the end of the year, it is essential that Congress act to ensure that transit riders benefit from the same tax incentives available to commuters who drive to work.