Supercommittee may be stuck arguing over sliver of spendingPolitico

By Jake Sherman — Political leaders, across the board, keep pressuring the deficit-cutting supercommittee to “go big” and aim for trillions in deficit reduction, but they keep saying “no” to anything that would actually accomplish that goal. Speaker John Boehner of Ohio and other Republican leaders have vowed to reject a penny of tax increases. President Barack Obama says Medicare benefits are untouchable if Republicans won’t raise taxes on the rich. Defense hawks — including Democrats like Defense Secretary Leon Panetta — are concerned about Pentagon spending levels… “I have, as you’ve heard me say over and over again, said everything needs to be on the table,” said Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.). “I think no one should, if they want to be responsible, should preclude any item from being on the table.”

Perry Video Calls Obama ‘President Zero’The New York Times, The Caucus

By Michael D. Shear — Ahead of Thursday’s debate in Orlando, Fla., the presidential campaign of Gov. Rick Perry of Texas released a Web video that offers a grim picture of a broken economy presided over by “President Zero.” The first half of the slickly produced video shows scenes of businesses and neighborhoods crumbling and quotes President Obama accepting responsibility for the economy. His statement is followed by a series of quick news reports about last month’s data that showed the country created no new net jobs in the previous month… The second half of the video pivots to an gauzy America that would be “working again” as Mr. Perry declares his love for the country that he wants to lead…

In U.S., 6 in 10 Do Not Expect Economy to Improve Soon — Gallup

By Jeffrey M. Jones — Three in four Americans assess the U.S. economy as no better than a year ago, with 35% saying it is about the same and 42% saying it is worse. Looking ahead to a year from now, Americans remain largely pessimistic, with 61% expecting economic conditions to be similar to now, or worse. These results are based on a Sept. 15-18 USA Today/Gallup poll, conducted at a time when unemployment remains high and economic growth continues to be sluggish. Gallup has asked Americans to predict the course of the economy a year ahead in the late summer or early fall of 2009, 2010, and 2011. Americans were generally optimistic about improvement in 2009 — with 65% believing the economy would be better, if not fully recovered, a year out. Each succeeding year, Americans have become less likely to expect conditions to improve, with 37% in 2011 believing the economy will be better a year from now…

President Obama's Deficit Plan 'Worse Than Nothing' Says Former U.S. ComptrollerHuffington Post

By Michael McAuliff — One of the experts who attended President Obama’s Rose Garden deficit speech is hammering the White House Tuesday, saying the president is using a bogus standard to show savings when really his plan leaves the deficit in worse shape. The White House strongly denies the contention. David Walker, former U.S. Comptroller General, is a noted budget hawk who ran the Concord Coalition,funded by Pete Peterson, a hedge fund billionaire who has invested heavily in campaigns to slash the budget, then founded the Comeback America Initiative. He initially released a positive statement, praising Obama for focusing on some pressing deficit drivers. But that was before he had a chance to read the fine print, and see where the numbers were coming from, he said.

House Dems outraise Republicans for AugustThe Hill

By Cameron Joseph — The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) outraised the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) in August and narrowly leads it in overall fundraising for the year to date. The DCCC raised $3.6 million last month to the NRCC’s $3 million. For 2011, the DCCC has raised $41.3 million to the NRCC’s $40.4 million, although it trails the NRCC in cash on hand. It is unusual for the minority party to outraise the party in power. The NRCC came into the year with considerably less debt and has $11.7 million cash on hand with $2.5 million in debt, while the DCCC has $7.8 million in the bank and owes $3.3 million…