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Ear to the Ground

GOP’s ‘Doomsday Plan,’ Cory Booker’s Food Stamp Challenge, and More

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Posted on Dec 3, 2012

On the Table: The GOP submitted a counteroffer to the president’s budget proposal as both sides look to avoid falling off the fiscal cliff. The House Republicans’ proposal includes cutting $2.2 trillion from the deficit through a combination of spending cuts, entitlement reforms and raising $800 billion in new tax revenues. The president’s opening bid, which the GOP has rejected, called for a $1.6 trillion tax increase, and would have reduced the ability of Congress to block the debt-ceiling limit from being increased. (Read more)

Another Option: Republicans are also considering an alternative proposal in the event that fiscal talks collapse. The “Doomsday Plan” consists of allowing a vote to extend the Bush tax cuts for the middle class, but would give the president nothing else. That would most likely set the stage for a showdown over the budget at the beginning of the year. ABC News’ Jonathan Karl: “Two senior Republican elected officials tell me this doomsday plan is becoming the most likely scenario. A top GOP House leadership aide confirms the plan is under consideration, but says Speaker Boehner has made no decision on whether to pursue it.” (Read more)

Deal on the Down Low: President Obama is quietly putting together a climate treaty that would require both the U.S. and China to curb their fossil-fuel emissions. The president is also working on policies to cut greenhouse gas emissions in the country by 17 percent over the next eight years. The news comes as envoys from more than 190 nations meet for the second straight week in Doha, Qatar, to discuss global warming at the United Nations climate talks. (Read more)

Climate Denier: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is shocked—shocked!—that a reporter would dare ask her about climate change before she delivered a speech about energy. Brewer, who said she doesn’t believe global warming is man-made, reportedly confronted the reporter afterward and asked, “Where in the hell did that come from?” Brewer’s stubbornness over the issue is especially unnerving giving her state has been hit by three different billion-dollar weather-related events in less than two years. (Read more)

Stepping Up to the Plate: Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker is set to begin his food stamp challenge Tuesday. Over the next week, Booker plans to limit his food expenses to just $4 a day in order to demonstrate what it’s like to live off of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The challenge stemmed from a Twitter debate Booker had with a North Carolina woman over the government’s role in funding school meals. (Read more)

Video of the Day: Former presidential candidates John McCain and John Kerry exchanged some good-natured ribbing Monday morning during a news conference. Because, according to Kerry, “This is what happens when you get two losers up here, folks.” Take a look:

 

—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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