Monday, October 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

US budget-cutters recruit in Philly

Ex-GAO chief David M. Walker is recruiting political and corporate muscle for his campaign against the US deficit

US budget-cutters recruit in Philly

David M. Walker, formerly America's top accountant (he headed the General Accountability Office under both Clinton and GW Bush), has been financing his own bus tour of America to promote Medicare, Social Security and military cuts and an end to tax 'loopholes' since leaving Blackstone Group founder Peter G. Peterson's campaign for similar goals in 2010. (More on that here.)

Walker's allies and supporters are funding a string of federal budget-reform campaigns; he told me he is paying for the "$10 Million a Minute" bus from his own pocket, using "speaking fees," while allied campaigns are raising millions to push Congress and whoever's President next to do the right thing. 

Walker stopped at Penn and Temple yesterday, where he was joined by ex-Gov. Ed Rendell, who is also active in efforts to raise business and public support for bipartisan efforts to balance the US budget. More in my story in today's Inquirer here.

Update: Bill Beaman, who's helping Walker's campaign, wants to put these cuts in context: "Walker is for gradually raising Social Security eligibility over time," and not for anyone who's currently 55 or older. "He further suggests that higher income people could pay more payroll taxes while they are working due to an increase in the Social Security payroll tax cap."  And he says these changes have to be limited so they don't leave more people in poverty.

Also, "in addition to more revenue, we need to invest more in infrastructure and alternative energy" -- which dovetails with the program Rendell's been pushing since he was Governor and in one of his post-public-service roles as a promoter of privately-funded public infrastructure projects.

Joseph N. DiStefano
About this blog

PhillyDeals posts raw drafts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area finance, investment, commercial real estate, tech, hiring and public spending, which he's been writing since 1989, mostly for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn, taught writing at St. Joe's, and has written the book Comcasted, more than a thousand columns, and thousands of articles, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

Joseph N. DiStefano
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