Lawrence H. Summers: Farewell Address at the Economic Policy Institute
What Does an Unmanaged Macroeconomy Look Like?

There Are at Most 13 Deficit Hawks in the Senate

A deficit hawk is somebody willing to vote against bills that increase the national debt--that do not contain within themselves provisions to recapture revenue and cut spending that lead to a reduction in the projected national debt within, say, ten years.

There are at most 13 deficit hawks in today's U.S. Senate:

Bipartisan support as tax deal advances in Senate: By James Politi in Washington: The deal struck by the White House and Republican leaders to prevent the expiry of Bush-era tax cuts advanced with overwhelming bipartisan support in its first vote in the Senate, building momentum in favour of the legislation.

The agreement would extend income tax rates for two years and unemployment benefits for 13 months, while cutting the payroll tax by 2 percentage points. It would deliver an extra $200bn in fiscal stimulus to the economy compared with economists’ expectations and bolster growth in 2011, but it would add to the US debt burden.

The margin in the procedural vote to end debate, known as “cloture”, was comfortable. By the evening, at least 82 of 100 senators had voted in favour of the deal, with 13 against. The vote paves the way for final passage by the Senate as soon as Tuesday and makes it harder for House of Representatives members to oppose it this week...