Thursday, August 11, 2011

Some Thoughts About the “Super Committee” Approach to Deficit Reduction

As the Congressional “super committee” selections are finalized (at the moment only Minority Leader Pelosi remains to name her three House of Representatives Ds to the committee), we can only hope that partisan ideological viewpoints are temporarily set aside and the “super committee” members recognize the need to move beyond the dysfunctional nature of our political system which has existed for much too long.

There are now at least three deficit-reduction frameworks that could be used as the committee’s starting point in its deliberations, which need to be concluded by Thanksgiving under the enacted debt-ceiling legislation. 

The first of these was the report of the Presidentially-created bi-partisan Simpson-Bowles deficit-reduction commission which was published in December 2010 (you can find it at

The second was an outline proposal by the Senate’s bi-partisan “Gang of Six”, which was issued in July 2011 during the negotiations preceding the enactment of the debt-ceiling legislation.  The executive summary of this proposal can be found at 

The third deficit-reduction framework is one advanced by the Comeback America Initiative in July 2011 (you can find it at  The CAI was founded by David Walker (former Comptroller General of the United States), a former Democrat (until 1976) and now moderate Republican --- so Walker either is schizophrenic or, as I prefer to think, holds bi-partisan credentials. 

The bottom line is that the “super committee” doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel --- all it needs to do is choose between the best features of the three wheels that have already been invented and put the better-designed wheel on a bi-partisan vehicle that moves our Country forward toward prudent fiscal policy and economic growth.