Monday, July 25, 2011

Reid/Democrat plan to cut deficit and raise debt ceiling released

CNN just released this summary of the Reid plan which Obama has endorsed

The Reid plan includes $1.2 trillion in spending cuts, including the military budget, as well as $1 trillion in savings from winding down the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It also calls for $400 billion in reduced interest payments as a result of the spending cuts, and $100 billion in savings in so-called mandatory programs that are funded for multiple years and therefore don't require separate congressional authorization each year.

In addition, the Reid plan calls for establishing a special congressional committee including members of both chambers and both parties to recommend further deficit reduction steps, including possible reforms to the tax code and entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security.

The 12-member committee would complete its work in time for the Senate to vote on it, with no amendments allowed, by the end of this year.

Boehner/Republicans immediately rejected the Reid plan according to CNN:

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio,...told reporters that the Reid plan failed to address the major causes of America's mounting federal deficits and debt, including entitlement programs such as Medicare, the government-run health insurance for senior citizens.

"I believe that the plan is full of gimmicks," Boehner said, adding it would not change the government's spending patterns "and it doesn't deal with the biggest drivers of our deficits and debt, and that is entitlement programs."

Reid/Democrats rejected the Republican plan

Both Reid and Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York, said an alternative plan proposed Monday by House Republicans has no chance of being approved by the Senate. Obama also has threatened to veto the Republican plan.

In contrast, they noted, the components of Reid's plan already have been supported by House Republicans. For example, Schumer said the $1 trillion in savings from winding down the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has been confirmed by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and was included in a budget plan the House passed with unanimous Republican support earlier this year.

"If they refuse this proposal, it means they want a default, for whatever reason," Schumer said.


STATUS:  Another day ends with no progress toward resolving the debt crisis.  If anything, the prospects of reaching some agreement seem to diminish further.

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