The most potentially influential politician you've probably never heard of, former two-term Maine Gov. Angus King, on Tuesday officially entered the race to replace retiring moderate GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe.http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2012/05/29/153933439/maine-independent-aims-to-be-senate-king-acknowledges-potted-plant-potential?ft=1&f=1014
King, 68, an alternative-energy entrepreneur and supporter of President Obama, filed more than 6,000 signatures with Maine's secretary of state to ensure his place on November's ballot.
My goal is to stay as independent as I can. I want to be able to have that flexibility as long as possible. It may be that in order to be effective, I'm going to have to sign up with one of the other teams. I don't want to do that. On the other hand, I don't want to go down and be a potted plant. That wouldn't be fair to Maine.
What's coming? The Bush-era tax cuts expire along with the payroll tax break; the nation's borrowing authority bumps against its limit; and huge mandatory spending cuts — half targeting defense — are set to kick in.http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2012/05/29/153889383/dire-predictions-amid-another-looming-fiscal-battle?ft=1&f=1014
All this could trigger another recession, but Congress is not likely to do much about it until after November's election.
Last week, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office also weighed in: Unless Congress acts to change current law, it said, spending cuts and tax increases could shrivel next year's growth to a mere one-half of 1 percent, which would probably be seen as a recession.
"I say to the 41 Republicans and Sen. Hatch who sent me this letter, move on revenues, we could have had a deal a long time ago," he said. "The president said that when we got together at the White House last Wednesday."