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House Majority Leader: Greek debt crisis ‘can happen here’

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The United States must embrace a blend of tax increases and spending cuts to rein in its deficit or face a potentially crippling debt crisis like the one in Greece, a top US lawmaker warned Monday.

“It is enough to look across the Atlantic at Greece’s extreme economic crisis and understand: It can happen here. If we don’t change course, it will happen here,” said Democratic House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer.

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Hoyer, a close White House ally, said Democrats and Republicans in the US Congress must take the politically tough decisions needed to deflate the ballooning US deficit and tackle record-high US debt.

“It seems to me that the only solution that can win the support of both parties is a balanced approach: one that cuts some spending and raises some revenue while avoiding extremes in either direction,” he said.

Hoyer noted that President Barack Obama has created a special commission to help put Washington’s fiscal house in order, a step some critics say amounts to admitting lawmakers cannot make tough decisions they were elected to make.

“The real work of cutting deficits is so easy to demagogue that it rarely succeeds, and will not succeed this time, without support from both sides,” he said in remarks prepared for delivery to the Brookings Institution think tank.

“That’s one of the reasons why the fiscal commission must not take any option off of the table, from raising revenues to cutting entitlement spending,” Hoyer said in the speech, which his office made public.

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“This, then, is our turning point and our choice: the point at which we join the debt-ridden powers who saw the story of their greatness end in fiscal ruin, or the point at which we as a nation refuse that ending and write a new chapter.”

Total US public debt outstanding was at 12.44 trillion dollars as of February 26, and the US budget deficit for fiscal year 2010, which ends September 30, was projected to hit an all time record 1.556 trillion dollars.


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2020 Election

‘Donald Trump is going to get indicted’ when New York gets his tax returns: David Cay Johnston

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On Saturday's edition of MSNBC's "AM Joy," Pulitzer Prize-winning Trump biographer David Cay Johnston predicted that the Supreme Court's decision on President Donald Trump's tax returns will lead to an indictment from New York prosecutors.

"What do you think might be out there?" asked host Joy Reid.

"Well, Donald Trump has already had two income tax fraud trials by the state of New York and the city of New York," said Johnston. "They were civil fraud, not criminal fraud. The New York Times in October of 2018, in this brilliant project on Trump's taxes based on records we know came from his niece — without question, he and his siblings are major-league tax cheats."

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2020 Election

More than 20 million people face eviction by the end of September as GOP threatens to cut aid: study

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One in five Americans who live in rentals could face eviction by the end of September as Congressional Republicans move to cut off unemployment assistance and other coronavirus relief, according to an analysis by the Aspen Institute.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Tucker Carlson’s ex-lead writer has a history of racist, homophobic and misogynistic social media posts

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Blake Neff, the lead writer of The Tucker Carlson Show on FOX News, resigned on Friday after CNN uncovered a trove of disgustingly racist, homophobic and misogynist social media posts that Blake published under the handle “CharlesXII” on AutoAdmit (aka. XOXOhth), a largely unmoderated message board used by lawyers and law school students.

Among Neff’s most telling posts are a reference to “foodie faggots,” a comment stating, “Black doods staying inside playing Call of Duty is probably one of the biggest factors keeping crime down,” and another comment stating that Democratic U.S. House Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib, all women of color, want to “MAKE YOUR COUNTRY A DUMPING GROUND FOR PEOPLE FROM THIRD WORLD SHITHOLES.”

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