After the spending festival in Washington last summer, the new theme on Capitol Hill is "cuts." Not nearly enough to offset the spending or close the deficit, but cuts anyway.
And, very broadly, here's how they tend to sort out: cuts in support for the poor; cuts in taxes for the well-to-do.
Late last week, the House passed an extension of President Bush's tax cuts on capital gains and dividends.
Democrats say it's a giveaway to the rich, a vote for yachts and mansions. Republicans say it's fuel for the economy, a vote for jobs and growth. Meanwhile, the deficit and American inequality rage on.
Hear about who the tax cuts really help, now and in the future.
Jonathan Weisman, Congressional reporter, The Washington Post
Leonard Burman, senior fellow, The Urban Institute and co-director of the Tax Policy Center. From 1998 to 2000, he was deputy assistant secretary at the U.S. Treasury Department. He is author of "The Labyrinth of Capital Gains Tax Policy: A Guide for the Perplexed"
Kevin Hassett, resident scholar and director of Economic Policy Studies, American Enterprise Institute.
David Cay Johnston, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter for the New York Times and author of "Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Rich - and Cheat Everybody Else".
This program aired on December 12, 2005.