Washington Post quotes Betsey Stevenson on fiscal cliff deal

December 25, 2012

The Washington Post reports that it is unlikely that Democrats and Republicans will reach a deal an agreement on the looming fiscal cliff before Jan. 1. In what the article refers to as a "remarkable turnaround," Democrats want to make permanent the Bush-era tax cuts for middle Americans—the same cuts the party opposed more than a decade ago.

Betsey Stevenson, associate professor of public policy at the Ford School and research associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), told the Post that "the reason there's been this movement toward broad consensus on renewing the tax cut for working- and middle-class families is that will give us a sharper progressivity in the tax system that is very much desired by Democrats and progressives who've seen an income distribution more and more distorted toward the wealthy."

Stevenson added that such increases may not, however, negate the possibility that taxes may need to rise even further to effectively address the country's needs.