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Jul 12 2011
Bipartisan panels have already agreed to reasonable middle-of-the-road approaches. Charlotte's own Erskine Bowles co-chaired a bipartisan commission with former Sen. Alan Simpson last year that proposed cutting $4 trillion from the country's debt with (mostly) spending cuts and (some) new revenue. The package Republicans now dismiss included $3 to $4 of spending cuts for every $1 of new revenue. And that revenue would come mostly from letting tax cuts for the wealthiest 2 percent expire as provided under law, and by closing egregious loopholes for oil companies, corporate jet owners and the like.
Jul 12 2011
Obama has said he’s willing to take heat from his party for entertaining changes to entitlement programs, be it through COLAs, eligibility age or means testing. Why he had this epiphany in July when his Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform proposed many of these changes in its “Moment of Truth” report in December is unclear. In addition to a variety of proposed fixes for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, the Simpson-Bowles Commission, so- named for co-chairmen Alan Simpson, a Republican, and Erskine Bowles, a Democrat, advocated using the chained CPI to calculate COLAs for Social Security recipients. (See Recommendation 5.7.) The commission offered a comprehensive plan for putting the U.S. on sound fiscal footing. The recommendations, including discretionary spending cuts, tax reform and simplification, and the elimination of tax breaks and loopholes, would achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction and ensure the solvency of Social Security.
Jul 12 2011
Former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo., the GOP co-chair of President Obama's deficit commission, told ABC News that "The American people are disgusted at both parties" for not being able to agree on a measure to reduce the deficit.
Jul 10 2011
A good starting point in the new negotiations is the plan offered by the president’s own bipartisan deficit commission that was headed by Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles. That plan proposed to reduce the deficit by nearly $4 trillion through 2020, bringing it down to 2.3 percent of GDP by 2015.
Jul 7 2011
In six months of increasingly tough negotiations as part of the Senate’s “Gang of Six,” I’ve learned that failing to embrace a bold, comprehensive, bipartisan plan will wreck our economic recovery, kill jobs and place our country at a competitive disadvantage for decades. The president’s bipartisan fiscal commission called its report “The Moment of Truth.” Here is the truth: We need to raise the debt ceiling and ignore irresponsible politicians who would let us default. To regain fiscal health, we need a plan that cuts our debt by at least $4 trillion. It can achieve that only with spending cuts and greater revenue. Elected leaders who ignore the truth and business leaders who indulge them will be responsible if we fail.
Jul 6 2011
Durbin, in a Tuesday interview with CBS News' Erica Hill on "The Early Show," argued that "each side has to give" -- be it Democrats or Republicans. "We've got to be honest, whether it's entitlements or taxes, let's be honest," Durbin said. "Let's do something that's significant, let's follow the deficit commission, which was $4.5 trillion on a bipartisan basis with everything on the table," urged Durbin, who was on the commission. "That is a sensible approach - Democrats and Republicans ought to buy in."
Jul 5 2011
Kirk said he personally favors the deficit reduction report of the bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility, headed by Alan Simpson, a former Republican senator and Erskine Bowles, a former advisor to Democrat Bill Clinton. But Kirk also he is anxious to see the final product of the so-called “Gang of Five,” a bipartisan group of U.S. senators, who are trying to produce a debt package. The group includes U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the Senate’s No. 2 Democrat.
Jul 5 2011
CNN's Eliot Spitzer praises debt commission co-chair Alan Simpson for urging politicians to shoot 'your sacred cow.'
Jul 4 2011
WHILE most of us have enjoyed our long Independence Day weekend, don't think our members of Congress haven't as well. If by enjoyment you mean, that is, riding in hometown parades and pressing the flesh with constituents. But what could thrill a politician more? There was plenty of grandstanding, though, about the cancellation of the traditional weeklong Fourth of July recess for the United State Senate after its members were chastised by President Obama last week. "At a certain point, they need to do their job," he chided.
Jul 1 2011
In response to a sold-out presentation by Deficit Commission co-chair Alan Simpson in Jackson Hole, more than 200 Wyoming citizens signed a public letter calling on their elected leaders to act on our nation's fiscal challenge.