A panel of political and financial experts discuss how America can navigate the looming fiscal cliff.
With the pending expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts, a debt ceiling increase, and mandated spending cuts triggered by the failed negotiations of the Super Committee, the end of 2012 brings the U.S. economy to a potentially dangerous precipice.
What options are still available for the White House and Congress to avert fiscal calamity? What impact will their ultimate decisions have on the economy? Join National Journal as we gather leading experts and policy makers to explore these important questions.
Budget and Tax Correspondent
Managing Editor, Budget and Economy
Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-PA)
House Budget Committee
Partner, Public Policy and Lobbying
Patton Boggs LLP
Professor, Graduate Tax Program
Georgetown Law Center
Gene Steuerle, Ph.D.
Richard B. Fisher Chair and Institute Fellow
Managing Principal, Tax Policy Group
Deloitte Tax LLP
Rosemary Becchi advocates on behalf of companies on a broad array of regulatory and legislative issues, with an emphasis on tax and financial services matters. Using her combination of public and private sector experience, Ms. Becchi helps clients further their tax and financial services policy initiatives by providing strategic legal and business counsel, fostering critical relationships, and implementing successful long-term policy strategies.
Ms. Becchi began her career in the Office of the Chief Counsel at the Internal Revenue Service, where she developed and drafted rulings and regulations on national tax policy. She then served as tax counsel on the Majority Staff of the Senate Finance Committee where she played a key role in developing legislation at the committee, including legislation on corporate and income tax accounting issues, the R&D tax credit, methods of accounting, depreciation, education savings and charitable giving.
After leaving Capitol Hill, Ms. Becchi worked at Arthur Andersen’s Office of Federal Tax Services providing tax advice to corporate clients on complex tax transactions. Following that she joined Citigroup’s Federal Government Relations Division and was responsible for representing Citigroup on its federal and state corporate tax, international, corporate governance, accounting, and auditing issues. Ms. Becchi later joined Fidelity Investments where she directed all of Fidelity’s tax legislative and regulatory issues, including issues that impacted section 529 college savings plans, retirement and health savings, deferred compensation, and defined contribution plans.
During her career, Ms. Becchi also served as a member of the Board of the Investment Committee for the Virginia College Savings Plan, where the committee oversaw the selection of investments options for the plan. Before joining Patton Boggs, she was president and founder of Becchi Consulting, where she advised businesses on operational, legal, legislative and regulatory matters.
Professor Buckley joined the full-time tax faculty in July 2011 as a professor in the Graduate Tax Program. Before coming to Georgetown he served in Congress for more than 35 years, most recently as Chief Tax Counsel for the House Ways and Means Committee, and earlier as Chief of Staff for the Joint Committee on Taxation.
He began his career as associate counsel in the Office of the House Legislative Counsel, after earning his J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1973. He would go on to participate in the crafting of all major tax legislation enacted after 1974.
Buckley served as an adjunct professor at the Law Center from 1995 to 2005, teaching a seminar on recent tax legislative developments with U.S. Tax Court Chief Judge John O. Colvin. He has published articles on general tax policy, individual tax issues, international tax issues, estate and gift taxes, and more. His appearances have included the Woodworth Lecture before the Tax Section of the American Bar Association on “Tax Changes Since Woodworth's Time: Implications for Future Tax Reform.”
Nancy Cook is the budget and tax correspondent for National Journal. She joined National Journal from Fast Company, where, as a senior writer and editor, she wrote profiles and features about media executives, technology companies, and corporate strategy and edited the magazine’s front-of-the-book section. Ms. Cook previously worked as a staff writer at Newsweek and Newsweek.com, where she covered business and economics. In 2010, Ms. Cook and an editor won the New York Press Club Award for Best Business Reporting on the Internet for their seven-month multimedia project called “Jobbed: How America Works Now,” which examined the future of work, careers, and the labor market as the country emerged from the recession. She has also worked at National Public Radio as a member of its Election Unit and as an on-air reporter for WRNI, the Rhode Island NPR affiliate. Ms. Cook holds a BA in English from Carleton College and earned her MS in journalism from Columbia University.
Kristin Roberts is news editor for National Journal. In this role, she leads the team of managing editors and guides NJ’s coverage of the biggest stories. Before joining National Journal in November 2011, Ms. Roberts was news editor and deputy bureau chief for Reuters’ Washington bureau. She spent 11 years at Reuters, with positions in New York, Miami, and Washington. She covered Wall Street while in New York and then led Reuters' coverage of housing and banking policy and regulation from Washington. In 2006, she shifted to Pentagon coverage, reporting on war policy and traveling with defense secretaries Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates. Ms. Roberts holds a master's degree in security studies from Georgetown University, a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University, and a bachelor's degree in international affairs from The George Washington University.
Rep. Allyson Schwartz
U.S. Representative Allyson Y. Schwartz is currently serving her fourth term representing Pennsylvania's 13th Congressional District. The 13th District includes both the close-knit neighborhoods of Northeast Philadelphia and the first ring suburbs of Montgomery County.
Eugene Steuerle is Richard B. Fisher chair and Institute Fellow at the Urban Institute, and a columnist under the title The Government We Deserve. Among past positions, he has served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Tax Analysis (1987-1989), President of the National Tax Association (2001-2002), chair of the 1999 Technical Panel advising Social Security on its methods and assumptions, Economic Coordinator and original organizer of the 1984 Treasury study that led to the Tax Reform Act of 1986, President of the National Economists Club Educational Foundation, Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, Federal Executive Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and a columnist for the Financial Times.
Dr. Steuerle is the author, co-author or co-editor of fifteen books and close to one thousand articles, briefs, and Congressional testimonies. Books include Contemporary U.S. Tax Policy (2nd edition), Retooling Social Security for the 21st Century, and Nonprofits and Government. He serves on advisory panels or boards for the Congressional Budget Office, the Government Accountability Office, the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the Independent Sector, the Aspen Institute Initiative on Financial Security, the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics, and the Partnership for America’s Economic Success.
Among other accolades, former top Treasury and White House officials wrote that 1986 tax reform “would not have moved forward without [his] early leadership,” and “few people have had greater impact on major changes in the tax law and the principal improvements in tax compliance and administration.” Among other honors, he received Outstanding Alumnus awards from his college and high school and the first Bruce Davie-Albert Davis Public Service Award from the National Tax Association in 2005.
Jon joined the Washington National Tax practice of Deloitte Tax LLP in June 2012 as managing principal of its Tax Policy Group. Jon leads a team that identifies, evaluates and monitors legislative proposals, and interprets the practical issues surrounding the application of tax proposals on behalf of Deloitte’s clients. Jon assists Deloitte’s clients in their efforts to stay aware of the numerous and often complicated debates in tax policy.
With considerable career experience in the legislative arena, especially in tax policy, Jon is able to provide clients with critical insights on the most complicated issues impacting their businesses and offer recommendations and guidance. His immense experience on Capitol Hill has provided him the valuable ability to anticipate legislation and the various impacts associated with new or revamped policies, which will in turn prove essential to the success of clients’ businesses.
Jon was previously the staff director for the Committee on Ways and Means of the U.S. House of Representatives, his most recent senior staff position in the U.S. House of Representatives. During his tenure as Staff Director for the Committee on Ways and Means, Jon was responsible for developing legislative policies and strategy on issues in the Committee’s jurisdiction, including taxes, healthcare and trade.
He also played a key role in the Tax Relief Act of 2010 and the Budget Control Act (debt limit increase, 2011). He was also deeply involved in the work of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, better known as the Super Committee.
Jon received his bachelor’s degree from Haverford College and juris doctor from the University of Virginia.
An expert panel of political and fiscal experts discusses how the U.S. can avert the crisis of the impending fiscal cliff. The panel isn't optimistic that the politicians in Congress will find compromise within the next President's first term.