November 20, 2006 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
Efforts in Congress to tie the defunding of the president''s Affordable Care Act to funding the government and raising the debt ceiling have tied things in so many knots that only public opinion and national leadership can cut through.
In its August 2003 budget and economic update, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projected a $401 billion deficit this year, and $480 billion next year, with no sign of a surplus reemerging until 2012. How will Congress deal with this new sea of red ink? Will mounting deficits be an issue in the 2004 presidential and congressional campaigns? These were some of the issues that were explored at this recent Congress Project seminar.
One of President Obama's first orders of business in office was to create a White House Office of Urban Affairs to coordinate the various agencies working on pieces of urban policies. Mercedes Marquez of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and experts outside the government takes stock of the efforts to date.