Rumors of "Big Deal" Resurface

After extensive development of debt ceiling increase plans by Senators Reid and McConnell as well as the recently released "Gang of Six" proposal, rumors surfaced Thursday afternoon that President Obama and Speaker of the House Boehner had rekindled talks of a large deficit reduction-debt ceiling increase deal.  President Obama and Speaker Boehner abandoned talks of a $4 trillion deal in recent weeks after both sides grew concerned that tax increases and entitlement cuts were too large to pass both the Senate and House of Representatives.  The new iteration of their "big deal" is rumored to reduce deficits by about $3 trillion over 10 years and would include some cuts to entitlement programs as well as a reformation of the tax code that would increase revenue. While the two sides are still short of reaching a final agreement, administration officials claim that the parties were closer to a deal than previously thought.  Spokesmen for President Obama and Speaker Boehner, though, maintained that, while the lines of communication remain open between the two leaders, there is no deal pending and no progress to report. The specific cuts to health care programs have not been released at this point, nonetheless, NRHA continues to encourage Congressional leaders and administration officials to take into account the needs of the rural health care safety net and rural economies when fashioning any deficit reduction plan. To find information on how to contact your Member of Congress to express your support of the rural health care safety net, please visit the NRHA homepage.  If you have any questions on these negotiations, please contact Maggie Elehwany or David Lee of NRHA Government Affairs at (202) 639-0550.