Probably not. It appears House Republicans and Senate Democrats are mostly agreed on details of a two-week spending bill for FY 2011 , avoiding a government shutdown. This buys more time for negotiating the final 2011 spending bill - a negotiation that will be much more difficult. The "easy" cuts will be in the two-week bill.

The House proposal reduces spending by about $60 billion compared to 2010, and by about $100 billion compared to the President’s proposal. Senate Democrats oppose such steep cuts, and will propose a bill that reduces spending more moderately. The differences are significant, both sides are dug in, and many Members are predicting negotiations will break down. That would result in federal agencies and programs shutting down until a final spending bill is approved.

The situation is very fluid, but we should know by Wednesday afternoon if the two-week spending bill is going to pass or get hung up.

A report to be issued Monday by Moody Analytics frames the challenge facing Congress.   The House proposal would cut an estimated 700,000 jobs through 2012. But the report also notes that reducing deficits down to sustainable levels will require cutting about $400 billion a year through the rest of this decade, even when assuming an economy recovery.

Posted On 2/27/2011 09:22:00 PM by Larry Ehl |

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