A majority of Americans give President Trump credit for the strong economy, according a new poll published on Sunday.
Taxes & Budget
Coverage of the national budget and your taxes.
By David Sherfinski - The Washington Times
House conservatives flexed their legislative muscle last week in helping defeat the farm bill that Republican leaders had been desperate to pass -- but even leading members of the right-wing rebellion said they are not sure what happens now. Published May 20, 2018
Sen. Rand Paul said Friday that part of the reason he forced a vote on his proposal to balance the budget was to show who among Republicans actually supports fiscal responsibility.
The Senate rejected Sen. Rand Paul's balanced budget proposal known as the "penny plan."
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway said Wednesday he was still rounding up votes for the 2018 farm bill and that he told his fellow Republicans they'll need to carry the bulk of the load amid near-unified Democratic opposition.
Over a 15-year period after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the U.S. spent a whopping $2.8 trillion on counterterrorism efforts, a leading Washington think tank said Wednesday in a study that sheds new light on the true extent of American government spending to fight terror.
In December, Congress adopted one of the most important tax reform laws in our nation's history. It is producing higher wages, better job opportunities and greater economic expansion than we've seen in a decade. According to the Congressional Budget Office, revenues for the first seven months of the fiscal year have increased because of economic growth. The tax cuts are indeed paying for themselves — and then some.
Marijuana generated nearly $61 million in tax revenue for the state of California during the first three months of legal recreational weed sales, falling shy of preliminary projections.
Baltimore's mayor has announced the city's police commissioner has resigned after being charged with failing to pay his taxes.
Sixteen Republican senators are petitioning their leaders to work longer hours, over weekends and even through this year's planned August recess to clear a backlog of presidential nominations and head off potential spending battles ahead of the next funding deadline at the end of September.
Sen. John Barrasso credited President Trump and Republicans on Tuesday for changing policies to get the economy moving.
Baltimore's mayor announced Friday that the city's police commissioner has been suspended with pay after he was charged with three misdemeanor counts of failure to file taxes.
Baltimore's police commissioner was charged Thursday with three misdemeanor counts of failure to file taxes, the latest embarrassment to rock a beleaguered force reeling from scandal to scandal.
Voters are ready to punish Republicans for the new tax cut package, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi predicted Thursday, doubling down on her suggestion earlier this week that Democrats will try to roll back some of the tax cuts if they win a congressional majority in November's elections.
Sen. Jeff Flake said Thursday that Congress doesn't have the votes to permanently extend the individual tax cuts in the GOP's $1.5 trillion tax law and that he would not support such a "show vote" he sees as "an election maneuver."
House GOP leaders vowed Tuesday to speed President Trump's new $15.4 billion spending cuts proposal through their chamber, brushing aside complaints from Democrats and some Republicans over the trims the White House wants to see.
White House Director of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday that the administration's request for additional cuts to congressional spending should be bipartisan after Democrats pushed for higher spending in the original deal.
The federal government took in a record tax haul in April en route to its biggest-ever monthly budget surplus, the Congressional Budget Office said, as a surging economy left Americans with more money in their paychecks -- and this more to pay to Uncle Sam.
President Trump will propose a massive $15 billion spending cuts package to Congress on Tuesday, two months after the White House was stung by criticism from conservatives furious at the $300 billion funding hike Mr. Trump signed into law.
Congress is readying for a fight over the future of the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as members of the House and Senate defense panels draft their versions of the Pentagon's budget for the coming fiscal year.
What is it about the internet that the government just can't seem to keep its greedy paws off of it?
President Trump said Saturday that "fake news" attacks on him can't hide the thriving economy or that Americas are doing better under his administration's policies.
Fans of the welfare state mostly the nave waiting for the streetcar to Utopia have dreamed for years of a "universal basic income" for everybody, paid by governments to layabouts and unemployables. The doughty Finns tried it, and to their surprise and disappointment it didn't accomplish anything beyond an expensive lesson in how human nature invariably works. Now they have discontinued their 16-month-old experiment in giving a no-strings-attached "universal basic income" to certain unemployed Finns.
"It's so evident that work is the only way to get people out of poverty."
California conservatives fired up the state's latest tax revolt Monday by submitting nearly one million signatures Monday to repeal the recent tax increase on gasoline and diesel.
Is it good policy to promote cronyism, waste, central planning, dependency and a dislike for markets? Of course not. However, the House Agriculture Committee didn't get the memo.
Rep. Kevin Brady said Monday that he discussed revisiting improvements to the tax code every year.
The California gas tax repeal effort has gathered nearly 900,000 signatures, far more than the 585,407 valid signatures required to qualify for the November 2018 ballot -- and the deadline isn't until May 21.
A wave of red-clad teachers will crash upon the Arizona state Capitol on Thursday for an unprecedented job action that will close schools for a majority of the state's public school students, part of an educator uprising that's also bubbled up in Colorado.
Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, a retired military intelligence officer and a Senior Fellow at the London Center for Policy Research says that over seventy percent of the FBI's current budget dedicated to foreign counterintelligence investigations have been diverted to support the probe's activities. Shaffer made the revelation on my radio program Monday afternoon on WMAL in Washington DC:
Rep. Kevin Brady said Tuesday there is potential for major economic growth if lawmakers use the tax reform bill to their advantage.
The new head of the nation's top public health agency is getting paid nearly twice what his predecessor made and far more than other past directors, government officials confirmed.
Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon said Monday that the tax cuts are providing optimism throughout the country.
Thanks to tax reform, deregulation and America's can-do spirit, our economy is strong. Unemployment is at its lowest level since 2000, wages are rising, and businesses are bringing jobs back to the United States. Despite these tremendous economic gains, we have yet to unlock America's full potential.
There's new interest in indexing the capital gains tax to account for inflation. This is something good for everyone that conservatives have been pushing for years. The White House is working now to determine whether the president has the legal authority to make this change in tax policy by his own hand. There's evidence that he can.
While tax cuts take the budget blame, spending does the debt damage. Proponents of big government spending are happy to stoke the latest story in the narrative that America is under-taxed.
The House moved Wednesday to force an overhaul on the IRS, voting to press the tax collection agency to become more customer-friendly -- just a day after the agency suffered a deeply embarrassing computer outage on the day taxes were due.
Congressional Democrats are campaigning for control of Congress in November on a pledge to repeal the recent tax reform tax cuts. That would increase taxes on working people and their employers, taking back the jobs, bonuses, pay raises, and economic growth and recovery that tax reform is already producing.
The IRS gave taxpayers an additional day to file their returns -- until midnight Wednesday -- after the agency sustained a major breakdown that left its systems unable to accept online filings or payments for much of Tuesday.
The IRS on Tuesday said some of its systems were experiencing "technical difficulties" as many Americans were racing to meet the April 17 deadline for most individuals to file their 2017 tax returns.
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers said Tuesday that Republicans are confident the tax bill will help them in the midterm races, but said her party isn't taking anything for granted.
The Supreme Court is hearing arguments about whether a rule it announced decades ago in a case involving a catalog retailer should still apply in the age of the internet.
When President Trump signed the 2,232-page, $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill last month, he was emphatic that it wouldn't happen again.
President Trump made a pitch in Florida on Monday for permanent tax cuts, criticizing incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson as an opponent of the recently approved tax-relief package who would try to raise taxes if his party takes control of Congress this year.
There is an old saying that you can't teach an old dog new tricks, and we've learned that again with the Congressional Budget Office and its latest highly misleading fiscal forecast.
With just days to go until the April 17 deadline, acting IRS Commissioner David Kautter said Thursday the tax-filing season is generally going smoothly and that his agency has managed to answer about 80 percent of the calls to its toll-free line during filing season.
Pruitt knew about raises for top aides, tried to rent $100K-per-month private jet: EPA whistleblower
Despite repeated denials, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt knew about and approved pay raises for two top aides, an agency whistleblower told congressional Democrats in a series of explosive accusations that raise fresh ethical questions around the EPA chief.
Federal income tax returns for 2017 must be postmarked or submitted electronically to the IRS by midnight April 17 this year — two days later than usual.
A Republican farm-state senator Wednesday criticized President Trump's plans to create a multibillion-dollar relief package for farmers who would be hurt by a trade feud with China.
In Washington, one particular theme animates nearly every conversation about government spending: Sequestration and the "readiness" of the U.S. military. But with the budget agreement of early 2018, Pentagon spending was boosted by almost $150 billion over the next two years. Discussion has now shifted toward how this new budget will be spent.
The IRS has dramatically improved its customer service from the terrible days at the end of the Obama administration, but advocates of the agency say it still needs more money if it's to set itself on firmer footing for the long haul.
President Trump signed an executive order Tuesday for a government-wide review of welfare programs, with a goal of putting more people back to work, White House officials said.
With growing support from anti-smoking advocates, the D.C. Council is aiming to increase the city's tax on cigarettes by $2 a pack.
Republicans' tax cuts and the new spending bill Congress approved last month will send the economy surging this year to 3.3 percent growth -- but will also send the deficit soaring back to the record levels of the early Obama years, the Congressional Budget Office said Monday.
President Trump's top economic adviser said Friday that the U.S. is not engaged in a trade war with China, despite the president's order for his administration to consider $100 billion in new tariffs on Chinese products.
U.S. employers added a modest 103,000 jobs in March after several months of robust gains, though the government's overall jobs report suggests that the labor market remains fundamentally healthy.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has complained that the federal tax overhaul approved last year gave tax cuts to wealthy people who didn't need the assistance. But the budget deal he signed last week includes loopholes designed to give those same wealthy people tax breaks, in what even some liberal watchdogs say is a legally suspect giveaway to the rich.
President Trump traveled Thursday to West Virginia to deliver a harsh message to the state's voters: Get rid of Sen. Joe Manchin.
Some of the conservative movement's biggest names urged President Trump Thursday to use NAFTA negotiations as a way to get around a Democratic filibuster and push through major cuts to government regulations.
Oh, happy day. Once in a while, justice is served, the good guy does win and the Big Bad Wolf at the Little American's door gets the kick in the arse it deserves. The Internal Revenue Service was just smacked with a preliminary order from a federal judge to pay up $3.5 million in settlement monies to tea party and conservative groups.
Beijing announced Wednesday a $50 billion list of U.S. products targeted with tariffs, responding in kind to President Trump's new import tax on Chinese high-tech in an escalating trade disputes.
Recent Opinion Columns
"Drain the swamp!" It was the battle cry of Donald Trump's presidential campaign. Many Republican members of Congress echoed that call as well, riding it to victory -- and control of both legislative chambers.
Every day there are legions of new economists who dismiss the Donald Trump economic agenda and his forecast of 3 percent growth as a wild-eyed fantasy. The consensus is that the economy "can't possibly grow at 3 percent" says The Wall Street Journal. "Slow growth is the new norm, so get used to it," writes Rucir Sharma, Morgan Stanley, chief global strategist at Morgan Stanley in Foreign Affairs magazine this month.
America's lethargic economy isn't doing so good and President Trump's tax cut plan to get it growing again is stalled in Congress for the foreseeable future.
Small businesses have become the crux of the tax reform debate, with Republicans saying it makes no sense to do only a corporate overhaul because it will leave behind millions of mom-and-pop shops that file their taxes as individuals.
This past weekend marked President Trump's 100th day in office. While tax cuts and health care reform have been discussed, neither has moved forward. With a potential fight over the debt limit looming, there is surely a lot that could be said about what Mr. Trump has and has not accomplished over the last few months. But there is at least one bright spot: reducing burdensome federal regulations.
Thanks to the beneficence of the federal government (and the calendar), we Americans have until midnight on April 18 to file our income taxes. It's too bad filing taxes wasn't an easier process.
President Trump's tax reform plan promises to re-energize the American economy, create jobs and slow the increase of the national debt. You might say that the Trump tax plan will "fundamentally transform the United States of America" after "decades of broken politics in Washington" and "eight years of failed policies" under his predecessor's administration -- to use Barack Obama's words from 2008.
President Trump has said he is going to move on to tax reform after the debacle with Obamacare repeal. Is there any reason that we can expect greater success with the tax reform effort? I argue no, unless the rules in the House and Senate are modified, and those in Congress, whose brains are connected enough to distinguish between tax rates and tax revenues, take control.
What hypocrites liberals and the media are. For weeks on end they've been beating up President Trump for not taking the initiative on the $10 trillion debt build-up under Barack Obama or the runaway entitlement programs that could bankrupt our nation.
A president's budget has the shelf life of a shrimp. A president drafts a budget and sells it with language as chaste and extravagant as the blue sky, and his naysayers dutifully mount their soap boxes to declaim, distort and denounce.
It was in 1916 -- 100 years ago this year -- that America made a big, big mistake that has done significant damage to our economy and the fairness of our tax system for an entire century. We are talking about the estate tax, more popularly known as the death tax.
When politicians insist on "reforming" some program they mismanaged and destroyed, they always turn to the average American and begin explaining the "sacrifice" we have to make in order to save it.
If you pay people not to work, what do you think they will do?
From The Vault
U.S. employers added 209,000 jobs in July, a second straight month of robust gains that underscore the economy's vitality as it enters a ninth year of expansion.
The House approved $1.6 billion Thursday to fund the first installment of President Trump's border wall, surmounting Democrats' unanimous opposition and giving the White House a significant though potentially short-lived victory.
It is no secret that what the major media seem to care most about is radically different from what concerns average Americans. While the inside-the-Beltway crowd continues to focus on alleged collusion between President Trump and Russia, real concerns like the future of Social Security are ignored.
White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Thursday that the Congressional Budget Office is still using a scoring system created by Obamacare's architect.
Republicans in Washington have been clamoring for years to address the long-term financial problems of Social Security and Medicare.
Kansas legislators have repudiated the tax-cutting experiment that brought Gov. Sam Brownback national attention, with even fellow Republicans voting to override his veto of a plan reversing many of the income tax reductions he championed in recent years as a way to fix the cash-strapped state's budget.
The White House's newly minted 2018 budget sprints toward balance over the next decade by counting on a major economic growth spurt to boost revenue and deep cuts on the spending side -- all of it enhanced by more than a few gimmicks and wildly optimistic assumptions.
President Trump presented his eagerly anticipated tax-reform scheme Wednesday and the reviews were, as expected, mixed but hopeful.
The National Endowment for the Arts and dozens of other federal programs would be eliminated under President Trump's first budget.
President Trump's plan for a $1 trillion program to rebuild America's roads, bridges, railways and airports has won early support from leading budget hawks and anti-tax conservatives because it is expected to be more about regulatory reform and alternative financing than a federal spending spree.
President Trump visited the Navy's new nuclear-powered aircraft carrier on Thursday and told sailors that more ships would be coming in his "great rebuilding" of the military.
The House Appropriations Committee dropped a defense spending bill Thursday that aims to keep the military running through September, the end of the current fiscal year.
In his first major address to Congress, President Trump will deliver a prime-time "message to the world" Tuesday night by proposing a robust military buildup and corresponding cuts in foreign aid, State Department operations and domestic programs.
A panel of four-star U.S. military officers is delivering lawmakers a bleak picture about the state of the armed forces.
For the last time, taxpayers are paying for a Hawaiian Christmas vacation for President Obama and his family, an annual luxury getaway that has cost the Treasury easily more than $35 million over eight years.