OVERNIGHT MONEY: Budget day arrives

TUESDAY'S BIG STORY:  

Budget storm: The latest winter storm dominated Monday's news but President Obama’s fiscal 2015 budget should take up the rest of the week and beyond on Capitol Hill.

The White House budget, which is a month late, will set off a flurry of activity on Tuesday but without much of the tension from years past because appropriators already have their discretionary top-line number for the fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1.

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The blueprint gives the president a chance to detail some of his priorities but, facing midterm elections, he is expected to avoid sweeping changes to entitlements and taxes that could cause problems for democratic candidates. 

Still, there's always the debate over long-term fiscal issues, even if lawmakers steer clear until next year. 

Lawmakers agreed to $1.014 trillion in spending for fiscal 2015 on discretionary programs as part of the fiscal deal reached in December by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.). 

So, appropriators can, pretty much, get started on hashing out the 12 spending bills. 

On Friday, Senate Democrats announced that they wouldn’t pursue a budget blueprint this year after they managed to approve a plan a year ago for the first time in four years.

Murray said there was no reason to do a fiscal 2015 budget because of her deal with Ryan.

Meanwhile, the White House has said the budget will include a $56 billion stimulus package and a 1 percent pay raise for federal workers.

The plan also assumes that Congress will pass a major overhaul of the nation's immigration system.

On Tuesday, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, director of the Office of Management and Budget, Jason Furman, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council, and Cecilia Muñoz, director of the Domestic Policy Council, will discuss the budget document.

House Republicans are expected to produce a plan but Ryan hasn't provided any insight into whether he will stick with the budget deal number or draft a proposal that makes deeper spending cuts, as he ensures his party's priorities are on the table. 

 

WHAT ELSE WE'RE WATCHING

Let the hearings begin: The budget’s release shifts appropriators into action. To kick things off on Tuesday, the House Appropriations  Legislative Branch subcommittee will hold several hearings on the budget for the Government Printing Office chief Davita Vance-Cooks, another with Architect of the Capitol Stephen Ayers and a third with Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Elmendorf. 

 

WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED

— Email shows Lerner seeking deal with Issa

— Buffett says economic growth 'remarkably consistent'

— Ryan: Welfare programs making poverty worse

Manufacturing picks up pace in February

— Business groups turn on Camp

 

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