"So first you'll go on Fox to be outraged.
Oh, and don't forget to tell them how I listen to you ..."
(Brian Synder/Reuters)Talk about a lesson in overplaying your hand.
Ever since someone whose name you'd never heard until last week pointed out that Ann Romney's never worked?something, by the way, that Ann has said about herself?the Romney campaign has tried like H-E-double-hockey-sticks to use this non-issue to score lady points. It's not the Republicans who are waging war on women; oh no, it's President Obama and the Democrats, with Ann Romney as the most aggrieved victim.
And it doesn't help that when yukking it up privately with their richest donors, Ann explained just how "offended" she really was:
"It was my early birthday present for someone to be critical of me as a mother," [Ann] said. "That was a really defining moment, and I loved it."It's hard to portray yourself as the sympathetic victim in all this when you're secretly loving it because you think it gives you an opening to exploit some manufactured outrage.
So Ann did what her husband does: she shook the Etch A Sketch and offered up a new spin in an interview with Diane Sawyer:
"That wasn't how I meant it," Romney told Sawyer, referring to the idea that the "present" in question was the ensuing backlash to Rosen's comments. "It was a birthday gift to me because I love the fact that we're talking about this. ... I love the fact that women are talking about deficit spending and the economy, I love that."Sure, Ann. Okay. When you said in private that you love that someone attacked you for being a mother, what you meant was that you love we're having a national conversation about deficit spending? And thank god someone said something about you because women wouldn't be discussing the economy otherwise?
The Romneys can try to exploit and spin it however they want, but the truth is, no one's buying the "outrage" they're trying to sell. Especially not women:
Thinking about the following characteristics and qualities, please say whether you think each one applies more to Barack Obama or more to Mitt Romney: Is in touch with the problems facing women today?Go ahead, Mr. and Mrs. Romney. Spin that.
The Senate is turning its attention back to the Postal Service, which "everyone" agrees is in crisis. That is to say, the Postal Service is a victim both of legitimate shifts in how we live our lives and communicate with our loved ones and of a manufactured crisis resulting from simultaneous congressional demands that it "run like a business" and congressional restrictions preventing it from running like a business in ways that would help.
The policy world debate over what to do about the Postal Service centers around cuts cuts cuts: Should post offices and processing centers be closed or just downsized? Should Saturday delivery be cut now or in a couple years? And so on. There are other possibilities that would bring the possibility of the Postal Service adapting more fully to the rise of the internet; for instance, a report conducted for the National Association of Letter Carriers by Ron Bloom, who headed up President Obama's auto rescue, finds that leading proposals for cuts would worsen the situation (manufacture more crisis, in other words), and suggests that:
[...] the agency should raise its stamp prices, which are among the lowest in the world, and find new ways to profit more from its built-in advantage as the only entity to reach every American home every day. It should also replace its multilayered governance system with a corporate- style board of directors whose members have entrepreneurial experience.Running government like a business is always a terrible idea. Saying that the Postal Service should be like a business in being profitable while not having the ability to raise prices or expand its offerings says you want it to fail. The Senate's postal bill has improved slightly in recent weeks, but stays in the established policy debate in which the question is not how to adapt but what to cut.The Senate has voted 74-22 to force a start to debate on a Postal Reform bill
Ladies, we?ve had fun this year, haven?t we? Komen defunding Planned Parenthood sure made PP?s contributions zoom up, and Komen?s zoomed down. The Republican?s jaw-dropping attack on contraception has given Obama an absurd lead among women. Katie Roiphe?yes, she who believes that date rape is nothing more than rough sex?has bravely decided that we?re so tired of being in charge, of our success, working gals all wanna be whipped. (Sigh. Somebody tell dominatrixes, who are making a mint off the high-powered men who really are in charge and do long to be whipped, or so I?ve been told by insider sources). It?s The End of Men! Women are The Richer Sex!
Yeah, right. Sorry to be Eeyore yet again, but as feminist blogger, economist, and minor goddess Echidne of the Snakes puts it, ?You get to be the richer sex by earning less, on average, than the other sex earns, you know. A well-known factoid.?
Here?s the reality: Today is Equal Pay Day?the day that marks how many more days an average working woman has to work to earn as much as an average working man earned in 2011. On average, in 2011, women working full time still earned about 23 percent less than men working full time. A very small subset of women outearn their male peers: young, highly educated, urban, single, and childless women. The vast majority of women have been shunted into the lower-paying occupations, in some cases kept out of the higher-paying ones by violence. But even within occupations, women are just paid less, across the board, in ways that can't be explained away by experience or education or time out of the workforce.
And as manufacturing and construction jobs pick up again, that wage gap is gonna widen?or so it has in the past, because women are disproportionately clustered in minimum wage and low-paying jobs, even when they have more education. Huffington Post has a nice piece reporting on the AAUW?s report ?The Simple Truth about the Pay Gap?:
Certain industries have a larger wage gap than others -- on Wall Street women only earn 55 to 62 cents for every dollar that their male co-workers do. However, a 2007 AAUW report showed that even after controlling for college major, occupation, industry, sector, hours, work experience, education, GPA, age, race/ethnicity, religion, marital status and number of children a 5 percent gap between male and female earnings existed one year out of college. Ten years out of college, a 12 percent ?unexplained difference? was found.
Check out the report?s page seven to see how much better, or worse, than average your state?s gap might be.
Early in the 2000s, I worked on former Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Evelyn Murphy?s book Getting Even: Why Women Don?t Get Paid Like Men?and What to Do About It, which came out in 2005. I was shocked by how much that missing money added up, over a working lifetime. If you?re a high school graduate, you?ll lose about $700,000 compared to the young men who graduate alongside you. If you?re a professional school graduate?doctor, lawyer, MBA?the pay gap means you?ll lose about two million dollars over your working lifetime.
Contraception is a much sexier issue, if you?ll pardon the pun, than economics. It?s easy for women to blame ourselves for not making better financial choices: we should?ve studied engineering instead of English; we should?ve negotiated harder instead of taking what we were offered; we shouldn?t have accepted all the childcare responsibility when the twins came along. And maybe we oughta be teaching young women about all those decisions. But there?s also a heck of a lot of structural unfairness still in the workplace, which is set up to move men along faster, to pay women less, and to shunt women more often into the grunt jobs. In 2006, Dr. Murphy (she?s an economist) and I wrote this in the Los Angeles Times:
Female firefighters are ? are incredibly rare because flagrant sex discrimination still keeps women out of every job that is overwhelmingly male -- truck driver, construction worker, electrician, miner, bond trader, you name it. More than 40 years after passage of the Civil Rights Act and 30 years after major lawsuits tried to crack male-employment monopolies, men still harshly patrol the entrances of too many well-paying jobs?
Do women really want to be firefighters and cops? Yes. Social scientists have repeatedly shown that women will jump into a better-paying field, no matter how dirty or onerous the work, if they think they'll be let in. Just try supporting a child or two or three, and maybe a disabled husband, on a waitress' or a bank clerk's wages: It can't be done.
"Men's work" still pays significantly more than comparable "women's work." Consider the difference between the median weekly earnings of a secretary ($552) and a firefighter ($933), a social worker ($698) and a police officer ($844). That's the difference between scraping by and supporting a family.
Policing and firefighting are, unfortunately, not anomalies. In 2000, two-thirds of U.S. working women were still crowded into 21 of the Bureau of Labor Statistics 500 occupational categories. The top 10 included receptionist, secretary, cashier, sales worker, registered nurse, elementary schoolteacher and nursing aide. Women still make up only 2% to 20% of all engineers, police officers, firefighters, mechanics and construction equipment operators, chefs and head cooks, and more.
Translation: Women remain ghettoized in jobs with skinny pink paychecks. Employers get away with flagrant violations of the law because there's no public outcry -- indeed, almost no public scrutiny at all.
All the above is still true. Equal Pay Day is a testament to that fact. C'mon, ladies. Let?s get as angry about our skinny wallets as we get when the guys call us sluts. Make your employer audit its own pay gap. Get working on the Paycheck Fairness Act. Get in touch with Evelyn Murphy?s WAGE Project to figure out what else you can and need to do. And let?s get even.
Yesterday my friends at Progress Missouri made national news when they released a study that showed at least 30 cookie-cutter ALEC bills had come through the state legislature since the GOP took control in 2000 via term limits.
Today, ALEC announced they are through meddling in our elections and gun laws, indeed, in all non-economic/free market matters:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Kaitlyn Buss
ALEC Sharpens Focus on Jobs, Free Markets and Growth - Announces the End of the Task Force that Dealt with Non-Economic Issues
(Washington, D.C.) April 17, 2012-David Frizzell, Indiana State Representative and 2012 National Chairman of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), issued the following statement today on behalf of ALEC's Legislative Board of Directors:
"Today we are redoubling our efforts on the economic front, a priority that has been the hallmark of our organization for decades. Fostering the exchange of pro-growth, solutions-oriented ideas is precisely why ALEC exists.
"To that end, our legislative board last week unanimously agreed to further our work on policies that will help spur innovation and competitiveness across the country.
"We are refocusing our commitment to free-market, limited government and pro-growth principles, and have made changes internally to reflect this renewed focus.
"We are eliminating the ALEC Public Safety and Elections task force that dealt with non-economic issues, and reinvesting these resources in the task forces that focus on the economy. The remaining budgetary and economic issues will be reassigned.
"While we recognize there are other critical, non-economic issues that are vitally important to millions of Americans, we believe we must concentrate on initiatives that spur competitiveness and innovation and put more Americans back to work.
"Our free-market, limited government, pro-growth policies are the reason ALEC enjoys the support of legislators on both sides of the aisle and in all 50 states. ALEC members are interested in solutions that put the American economy back on track. This is our mission, and it is what distinguishes us."
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is the nation's largest nonpartisan individual membership association of state legislators, with over 2,000 state legislators across the nation and more than 100 alumni members in Congress. ALEC's mission is to promote free markets, limited government, and federalism throughout the states.
I knew that being exposed would have some effect on the way they do business, but I really, really, really didn't expect this. But I do know I like this feeling and I will never take my eyes off them ever again, because they can do enough damage in the economic sphere with their free-market nonsense.
Read The Full Article:
we often forget that there are many straight allies out there -- and lot of them are needed to beat back A1, not just for their LGBT friends, neighbors and relatives, but for their own families -- this amendment is that far-reaching -- it would affect[...]
Read The Full Article:
In January 2011, the advocacy group Utah Sound Money released a 30-second ad designed to stir up support for a new bill in the state legislature. ?The almighty dollar?s not looking so almighty these days,? the announcer intones as storm clouds fill the screen. ?The feds have us tap-dancing at the edge of financial ruin.? A small map of the U.S. totters along a rising red graph of debt. Suddenly, blue skies open as a giant gold coin floats down, using the Constitution as a parachute. ?Restoring an inflation-proof, sound-money option offers a time-tested option,? the announcer concludes over the laughter of children at play. Viewers are then urged to support the Utah Sound Money Act.
Sponsored by Representative Brad Galvez, a Republican, the bill would make gold and silver coins from the U.S. Mint legal tender in the state. Although no businesses or individuals are compelled to use them, Galvez?s bill requires the state to accept the coins for tax payments or any government fees. Galvez says he was motivated by a fear that the nation?s mounting debt could lead to a loss of faith in the dollar, resulting in hyperinflation and possibly a currency collapse. He wanted to protect Utah, he says, from this calamity by creating an alternative to ?fiat? currency, under which the dollar is backed by the ?faith and credit? of the U.S.?not, as it once was, by gold reserves.
The Utah measure might sound like one of the many thousands of fringe bills that get filed in state legislatures and then are never heard of again?except occasionally as a punch line on late-night TV. But Galvez?s bill became law last year. Now he?s working on new proposals to make silver and gold easier to use. While Utah is the first state to pass such a law, others are trying. In the 2011?2012 legislative cycle, bills were introduced in 17 states to either recognize gold and silver coins or study the options for alternative currencies.
Ian Millhiser, a policy analyst for the liberal Center for American Progress (CAP), says that these bills come not from an organized national effort but from ?people who are sympathetic with the Ron Paul vision of the world going out on their own.?
For years, Paul?the long-serving Texas congressman and three-time presidential candidate?has claimed that the Federal Reserve and its paper currency will eventually doom the U.S. to insolvency. Reviving silver and gold was long a concept relegated to conspiracy theorists, survivalists, and extreme free-marketeers. But the 2008 financial crisis, along with the bank bailout and stimulus bills, lent further credence in far-right circles to the idea that the U.S. was dashing headlong toward financial ruin. The hard right turn of the Republican Party, combined with the Tea Party surge in statehouses in 2010, has further inflamed Fed hysteria.
Paul?s persistent warnings of an unchecked Federal Reserve recklessly printing too much money?the grand theme of his campaigns for president?have found a growing audience. At least six of the state legislators sponsoring gold bills have endorsed him for president. While Paul has focused on auditing (or abolishing) the Federal Reserve, these measures assume its eventual demise and offer, according to their sponsors, a survival plan.
The believers paint a scary picture. ?If the value of the dollar falls precipitously, society in a sense becomes unglued, and it can even result in riots and chaos,? says Mark Thornton, a senior fellow at the Alabama-based Ludwig von Mises Institute, a libertarian think tank where Paul has lectured. ?You can really destroy a civilization very, very quickly.?
To mainstream economists, the notion of returning to the gold standard is not only laughably impractical but also economically perilous. James K. Galbraith, a professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, dismisses gold-standard talk as ?nonsense.? For one thing, the economy has simply grown too large to be tied to precious metals. The total amount of gold mined in history amounts to approximately $8 trillion. The U.S. gross domestic product in 2011 was about $15 trillion, and the national debt amounts to $15 trillion as well. As CAP?s Millhiser points out, a gold standard leaves the government with little ability to respond to economic fluctuations. ?A big reason why we don?t have a gold standard,? he says, ?is because it?s really important that we are able to react to the nature of the economic market by expanding or retracting the money supply.?
Like most countries, the U.S. relies on a central bank to control monetary policy. The Federal Reserve was created in 1913 and has the power to expand or contract the amount of currency in circulation. In 1933, during the throes of the Great Depression, the U.S. began to leave the gold standard when President Franklin Roosevelt and Congress outlawed private ownership of gold coins. Over the next four decades, the government cut the remaining strings connecting the value of the dollar to gold.
To the modern-day Gold Bugs, though, the Federal Reserve is the gravest threat to the nation?s economic health. Minnesota and Idaho have almost identical bills, which begin by justifying the need for gold and silver tender. ?Because it is based entirely on debt and not redeemable in gold or silver coin, the currency emitted by the Federal Reserve System has created and threatens to create increasing instability in the governmental finances and private economy of the state,? both read.
?What the Federal Reserve is doing with our monetary policy is catastrophic,? says Georgia state Representative Jason Spencer. ?They are killing the very thing that Americans work hard for, and that?s our money,? he says. ?If we got back on a true gold standard ? it would keep government spending in check.?
Spencer was a secondary sponsor of one of the most extreme bills this legislative cycle, authored by Representative Bobby Franklin. While most bills, like Utah?s, would not compel anyone to use gold and silver coins, Franklin?s measure required state taxes to be paid in the precious metals. That would be tricky, of course, for the many Georgians who don?t have the coins, and the bill included no plan to make them widely available. Franklin died last year with his bill still languishing in committee, and Spencer has decided not to pursue it further. But he?s not giving up. Next session, he plans to introduce Utah-style legislation.
Like other proponents of gold-backed currency, Spencer feels a sense of urgency to protect the wealth of his state?s residents in the event of a Fed collapse. ?Fiat currencies, if you study them through history, always end bad,? he says. He points to the demise of the Argentine peso and the Russian ruble and to Zimbabwe?s problems with hyperinflation. ?You got old women and children out there panning for gold,? he says. ?The United States is not immune to a currency crisis.?
Saving the state from economic catastrophe isn?t the only motivating factor for the likes of Spencer and Galvez. This is also, they say, a matter of adhering to the Constitution. Since Article I, Section 10, of the document gives states the right to make ?gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts,? Galvez believes it?s what the founders wanted states to do. ?States have been violating the Constitution? by not recognizing the coins, says Michael Boldin, who heads the Tenth Amendment Center, a Los Angeles?based group that advocates state sovereignty and supports the gold and silver laws.
Constitutional scholars say that states do indeed have the right to recognize gold and silver. They must, however, recognize the U.S. dollar as well?no exceptions?which likely invalidates bills like Georgia?s requiring tax payments to be made in gold or silver. Utah?s bill, however, does appear to pass constitutional muster, says Gerard Magliocca, a law professor at Indiana University and authority on William Jennings Bryan, whose 1896 presidential campaign centered on bringing silver back as a money standard. States have the right to allow coins as legal tender. But, Magliocca notes, the Constitution limits how much influence state currency policies can have, and states cannot negate the status of federal dollars.
University of Delaware economist Farley Grubb concurs: ?As long as states can?t abrogate the legal--tender power of Congress, anything they do is irrelevant.? Only a few true believers would use gold rather than the U.S. dollar, he says, no matter what laws are passed. If people believe gold is undervalued, those who have it will hoard it rather than spend it. For example, no one wants to spend an ounce of gold (worth about $1,700 at press time) on a trip to the grocery store, especially if they can simply use dollars and wait for the gold to be worth more. In effect, everybody would be playing the market. Economists have a name for this: Gresham?s Law, which states that when you have two currencies circulating simultaneously, people tend to hoard the dear one.
The economic realities, combined with the limited amount of gold out there, mean that this is ?something that can be safely ignored since nobody would do it,? according to Galbraith. ?The notion that we?re going to see a significant part of the population using gold coins is far-fetched.?
Such logic is shrugged off by those who see alternative currencies as a panacea. Already the Utah Gold and Silver Depository has opened shop; it will offer debit-like gold cards so people will not have to carry the metal around. If the Fed collapses, Representative Galvez says, the state will have the alternative infrastructure to keep chugging along. ?We?ll be set, ready to go,? he says. ?We?ll already have a system in place that will allow us to continue.?
Mitch McConnell and John Boehner wish all you 30+ percent tax rate paying rubes a
Happy Tax Day. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)On Monday, Democrats in the Senate voted to establish the Buffett Rule, making sure that people who make over $1 million a year would pay a minimum of 30 percent of their income in taxes. Of course, Republicans voted against it and the bill failed.
Majority support doesn't count at all for Republicans.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said:
"This entire debate has been very illuminating for a lot of folks," said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. "It's revealed a lot about this president. By wasting so much time on this political gimmick that even Democrats admit won't solve our larger problems, it's shown the president is more interested in misleading people than he is in leading."And:
"We have a president that seems more interested in pitting people against each other than he is in doing anything," said Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.Meanwhile, House Speaker John Boehner opined (on Facebook! He's such man of the people):
"In fact, the 'Buffett Tax' hike touted by President Obama has been called everything from a 'sham' to a 'hoax' to 'total gimmickry.'"And:
[T] he clash shows "who is listening to the American people and focusing on their priorities."
Unfortunately for these Republican leaders, Boehner was right about the vote showing who is paying attention to priorities. He's just got it backwards. Yesterday's CNN/ORC poll [pdf].Would you favor or oppose a proposal to change the federal income tax rates so that people who make more than one million dollars a year will pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes?
No opinion 1%
Like a good liberal, I feel a tiny pang of guilt when I do my taxes every year and see how much the government is subsidizing my choice to buy a home. Not that I'm going to turn it down as long as it's in place, but the mortgage interest deduction is not easy to justify. Even if there are reasons to believe that home ownership is a good thing, that doesn't necessarily mean that the government should pay you thousands of dollars to do it, particularly when you were probably going to do it anyway.
Mitt Romney is down to a modest three homes these days (the house in Boston, the lake house in New Hampshire, and the beach house in La Jolla; he got rid of the ski lodge in Deer Valley and a second Massachusetts house), but that didn't stop him from suggesting that we might consider eliminating the mortgage interest deduction for second (and third and fourth). The idea was quickly attacked from multiple sides (unsurprisingly, the National Association of Realtors, one of the most powerful lobbying groups in Washington, is adamantly opposed), and the Romney campaign made sure reporters knew he wasn't really proposing anything, he was just tossing around some ideas that he might or might not actually be interested in enacting.
Which is perfectly fine?it would be a much more interesting campaign if candidates felt free to raise issues without having to answer for every implication of every notion that came out of their mouths. But in this case, Romney is right! The idea that the taxpayers should subsidize wealthy people's vacation homes (almost by definition, if you've got a second home you're wealthy) is ridiculous. Eliminating the mortgage interest deduction altogether might be politically impossible, what with it being a gigantic middle-class (and upper-class) entitlement that tens of millions of American families enjoy. But why not make it just a little bit more reasonable by saying that everybody only gets to take the deduction on their primary residence?
Eliminating the deduction for second homes wouldn't have a transformative effect on the budget?the estimates being quoted today are that it would save about eight to ten billion dollars a year. But that's not nothing, either. Nevertheless, I'm guessing Romney will quickly disavow this the next time he gets asked about it.
Our guest blogger is Melissa Dunn, an LGBT Research and Communications intern at the Center for American Progress.
This Tax Season, gay and transgender- headed families are reminded that they are not equal in the eyes of the law. Because of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), even in states that have achieved marriage equality, the federal tax code prevents legally married same-sex couples from filing together and qualifying for all of the same benefits of their straight married neighbors.
Last October, CAP coauthored ?All Children Matter: How Legal and Social Inequalities Hurt LGBT Families,? a comprehensive report on the state of LGBT families with the Family Equality Council and the Movement Advancement Project. The follow up piece, ?Unequal Taxation and Undue Burdens for LGBT Families,? focuses specifically on the income tax inequality faced by LGBT families. Below are the top five ways that marriage inequality hurts gay couples during tax season, according to those reports:
1. LGBT families are denied joint filing status and accompanying tax relief: Since married LGBT families are not legally recognized by federal law, they cannot receive the significant tax advantages of the ?Married Filing Jointly? tax status, which means they have less money to meet the financial needs of their family. LGBT families can only file as ?Single? or at best, ?Head of Household,? even when they are married or in other legally recognized unions and partnerships.?
2. LGBT families must misrepresent and ?carve up? their families: Parents are forced to decide which parent ?claims? their children for exemptions. To gain tax relief, some families must split their children between different tax returns. Other LGBT parents can only claim their children as ?qualifying relatives,? or not at all. Heterosexual married families can simply file jointly, account for all children on one form, and check the exemption boxes.?
3. Tax exemptions for spouses and dependents: In general, a taxpayer is allowed to claim one exemption for herself, one for a heterosexual spouse (if filing jointly and regardless of the spouse?s income) and one for each ?qualifying child? or ?qualifying relative.? For the 2011 tax year, each dependent reduced the taxpayer?s taxable income by $3,700, lowering the taxable income of a family of four by $14,800. For a family of four with an income of $45,000, this would reduce the tax due by about $2,220.?
4. Education-related deductions and credits: The IRS offers a variety of tax credits, deductions, and savings plans to assist families with the expense of education. Several mechanisms are available for taxpayers, including reducing the amount of income tax that a taxpayer may have to pay (via tuition and fees deductions or credits such as the American Opportunity Credit), accumulating tax-free interest for education-related savings plans, or receiving tax-free education benefits (for instance, from an employer).?
5. Earned income tax credit: According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the earned income tax credit lifted more than 3 million children out of poverty in 2010. The EITC is a fully refundable credit, which means that even when a family has no taxable income, the EITC can result in a refund check from the IRS. In addition to the federal EITC, 23 states and the District of Columbia have state EITC programs, and a recent study found that half of all families with children receive the EITC at some point.
DOMA must be repealed in order to update the tax codes unequal treatment of LGBT-headed families during tax season. Until then, tax reform is needed to expand access to many of the deductions and credits not afforded to LGBT-headed families and broaden definitions such as ?qualifying child? or ?qualifying person.? These changes will help remedy existing inequities and allow LGBT families to benefit from the family- focused tax advantages and incentives available at the federal and state level to other families.
This Tax Day, a significant majority of Americans think that the rich are getting off easy compared to middle- and working-class Americans. According to the latest CNN poll, “68% of respondents said the current tax system benefits the rich and is unfair to ordinary workers, compared with 29% who disagreed with that view.” The poll’s respondents have good reason to think the rich pay less: Many millionaires pay a lower effective tax rate because their income comes from capital gains or other low-tax investments, instead of wages. Yet Senate Republicans blocked the Buffet Rule last night, which would have helped address this problem, even though it too has strong support from the public.