Shepard Lee Lecturer Calls Deficit Reduction Fervor Misplaced

Center for American Progress Vice President for Economic Policy Michael Ettlinger warned the audience at MECEP’s 12/14/2010 event that states will not likely receive additional federal aid when the new Congress convenes in January.  He said that most attention, especially in the House of Representatives, will likely focus on attempts to cut programs in an ill-conceived effort to rein in federal deficits.

Ettlinger denounced provisions in an agreement which passed the Senate last night that would extend Bush era tax cuts for the wealthy and maintain a much weakened estate tax.  However, he said that Congress should ultimately accept the agreement because it extends unemployment benefits for millions of Americans, continues tax cuts for middle and lower income families and creates a one-year two percent payroll tax holiday.  He said that most economists agree that the tax cuts for the rich will do little to create jobs, but that the unemployment benefit extension and the tax cuts for working families will help to fuel the nation’s recovery from the Great Recession.

To listen to an interview with Ettlinger broadcast on Maine Public Broadcasting Network, click here.

To view an interview with him on WCSH-TV/WLBZ-TV’s “207” news magazine program, click here.