Commission Might Consider Tax Increases
Allan Hubbard, assistant to the president for economic policy and director of the National Economic Council, on Monday said that a bipartisan commission proposed by President Bush to study Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security might consider tax increases to address the financial problems of the programs, CongressDaily reports. Hubbard said, "The president's made it very clear that he's very open-minded and that he's open to the Democrats putting on the table and the Republicans on the table what they think is appropriate."
Hubbard added, "I think it's important that it's clear that the president very much believes that his tax cuts have had a huge impact -- a positive impact -- on the economy, and the last thing in the world he thinks should happen is to raise taxes." Hubbard said that he is not aware of when the commission, which Bush proposed in January during his State of the Union address, would form.
"There are conversations that are going on, and all the parties involved in those conversations have agreed that it would be kept private," he said.
According to CongressDaily, "Congress would have to consider entitlement reform during 2007, before presidential and congressional politics steal Washington's attention in 2008" (Koffler, CongressDaily, 5/23).