political notebook

Report says Obama proposal would produce larger deficits

Copies of President Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2015 were set out for distribution.
Copies of President Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2015 were set out for distribution.

WASHINGTON — A report released Thursday by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says President Obama’s budget request would mean significantly larger deficits than the White House estimates.

The budget office says the plan proposed last month by Obama would produce deficits of $6.6 trillion over the next 10 years, $1.6 trillion more than the White House estimates.

The main reason is that the White House has a rosier estimate of the economy’s performance over the decade than the budget office. That means the administration predicts higher tax revenues.


The president’s budget is just a proposal; it has gained little traction on Capitol Hill since its release last month. The GOP-controlled House and Democratic-led Senate have already settled on a spending ‘‘cap’’ for this year’s round of annual spending bills. A budget debate last week in the House was about political messaging and left intact last year’s small-bore congressional budget deal.

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The budget office also says Obama’s budget contains $1.4 trillion in tax increase over a decade, much more than claimed by the White House. Some $456 billion of that comes from higher revenues because of an influx of workers through immigration reform.


Associated Press

Sebelius says she won’t be launching a bid for Senate

WASHINGTON — Kathleen Sebelius, the soon-to-be former secretary of the Health and Human Services Department, said through a spokeswoman Thursday that she was not interested in running for the Senate in Kansas, despite recent entreaties from Democrats.

“Secretary Sebelius is continuing her important work at HHS and is not considering a run for the Senate,” the spokeswoman said.


Sebelius said last week that she was resigning after overseeing the department during the tumultuous rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Democrats began seeking her out almost immediately to run for Senate in Kansas, where she was elected twice as governor.

Senator Pat Roberts, the Republican incumbent, has been targeted as vulnerable by Democrats.

But Sebelius, who would face tremendous odds in a state where the president and his health care law are deeply unpopular, wanted to put to rest any speculation as she finishes her tenure as secretary.


New York Times

Biden’s son announces he’ll run for governor in 2016

DOVER, Del. — Vice President Joe Biden’s eldest son, Beau, said Thursday that he has decided not to seek reelection as state attorney general this year and plans to run for governor in 2016.


Biden, 45, who underwent surgery at a Texas cancer center last year, had said previously that he would seek a third term as attorney general.

His announcement caught Delaware’s political establishment off guard. He was seen as a virtual shoo-in for reelection.

Lieutenant Governor Matt Denn, widely seen as a potential Democratic candidate for governor, said in an e-mail that he has not made any decisions about his political future.

Biden, who suffered a mild stroke in 2010, was hospitalized last August after becoming weak and disoriented. He was later flown to MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas, where doctors removed what was described as a small lesion.

Biden has refused to discuss his latest health issue.


Associated Press