Promises about Government Efficiency on The Obameter

Require economic justification for tax changes

Adopt the economic substance doctrine, a policy that states that tax changes must have significant economic justification, as a federal law.

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Provide option for a pre-filled-out tax form


Will direct the Internal Revenue Service to "give taxpayers the option of a pre-filled tax form to verify, sign and return to the IRS or online. This will eliminate the need for Americans to hire expensive tax preparers and to gather information that the federal government already has on file."


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Require that health plans utilize disease management programs


"Require that plans that participate in the new public plan, Medicare or the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) utilize disease management programs to improve efficiency and lower costs."


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Implement and fund proven health intervention programs


Implement and fund "evidence-based interventions, such as patient navigator programs." A patient navigator is someone specifically designated to guide patients and their families through the complexities of the health care system.


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Eliminate the higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans

"Eliminate the excessive subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans and pay them the same amount it would cost to treat the same patients under regular Medicare."

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Allow Medicare to negotiate for cheaper drug prices


"Allow Medicare to negotiate for cheaper drug prices."


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Increase funding to expand community based prevention programs

"Increase funding to expand community based preventive interventions to help Americans make better choices to improve their health."

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Direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct a study of federal cancer initiatives

"As president, Barack Obama will immediately direct his Secretary of Health and Human Services, in collaboration with agency officials, academic researchers, cancer survivors and advocates for people with cancer, and state public health officials, to comprehensively examine the various cancer-related efforts of federal agencies, and provide recommendations to eliminate barriers to effective coordination across federal agencies and between the federal government and other stakeholders."


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Establish transparency standards for military contractors


"Establish transparency standards for military contractors. … Create the reporting requirements, accounting, and accountability needed for good governance and actual money savings with contracting."


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Set standards for when the government should hire defense contractors


"Require the Pentagon to develop a strategy for figuring out when contracting makes sense and when it doesn't, rather than continually handing off governmental jobs to well-connected companies."


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Restore the government's ability to manage contracts by rebuilding our contract officer corps


"Restore the government's ability to manage contracts, by rebuilding our contract officer corps."


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Create a system of incentives and penalties for defense contracts


"Enact a program of market incentives and sanctions for Pentagon contractors, just like any other good business client would use, to reward companies that perform well and come in under budget, while punishing firms that fail to perform as originally hired."


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Better integrate efforts of federal agencies with the military through new Mobile Development Teams


"As president, Barack Obama will integrate federal agencies and the military in stabilization and aid efforts. Obama will set up new Mobile Development Teams that bring together personnel from the State Department, Pentagon and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to deploy to regions at risk."


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Allocate Homeland Security funding according to risk

"Direct our precious homeland security dollars according to risk, not as a form of general revenue sharing."

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Restructure and streamline USAID


Barack Obama and Joe Biden will "coordinate and consolidate PEPFAR, Millennium Challenge Corporation, Middle East Partnership Initiative and many foreign assistance programs currently housed in more than 20 executive agencies into a restructured, empowered and streamlined USAID. ... An empowered and elevated agency should be more nimble in the face of change and use tax dollars more responsibly."


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Expose Special Interest Tax Breaks to Public Scrutiny


"Will ensure that any tax breaks for corporate recipients — or tax earmarks — are also publicly available on the Internet in an easily searchable format."


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Simplify the application process for financial aid


"Will streamline the financial aid process by eliminating the current federal financial aid application and enabling families to apply simply by checking a box on their tax form, authorizing their tax information to be used, and eliminating the need for a separate application."


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Reduce subsidies to private student lenders and protect student borrowers

Will "eliminate wasteful subsidies to private student lenders, which will save nearly $6 billion dollars per year, and invest the savings in additional student aid."

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Restore Superfund program so that polluters pay for clean-ups


"Will restore the strength of the Superfund program by requiring polluters to pay for the cleanup of contaminated sites they created."

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Appoint experienced disaster official to head FEMA

"Will professionalize and depoliticize the appointment of FEMA's director. Like the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the FEMA Director will have a fixed term of office to insulate him or her from politics. The FEMA Director will report directly to President Obama, serve a six-year term and will have professional emergency management experience."


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