New Podcast: Reuters’ Jim Pethokoukis on Health Care Reform and the Deficit

November 4, 2009

On this week’s Tax Policy Podcast, Jim Pethokoukis, the Money & Politics columnist and blogger for Reuters, discusses health care reform, the deficit, economic recovery and the possibility of a federal value added tax (VAT).

Both House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s health care reform bill and the Senate Finance Committee plan are financed by a combination of Medicare spending cuts and tax increases — and are even expected to reduce the deficit. Whether the Medicare cuts will actually happen is one issue. Another is the consequences of raising taxes in a recession. On the other hand, if either of these two situations does not happen, we’re looking at piling on more debt.

Unless Congress reins in spending, Pethokoukis notes, we’ll keep moving toward “a high-tax, slow-growth economy, which is a very different kind of economy than what Americans have become accustomed to over the last generation.”

Listen to this week’s podcast here.


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