Final debt commission vote anti-climactic, as three plans released already lay out way forward

Photo of Jon Ward
Jon Ward
  • See All Articles
  • Send Email
  • Subscribe to RSS
  • Follow on Twitter
  • Bio

      Jon Ward

      Jon Ward covers the White House and national politics for The Daily Caller. He covered the last two years of George W. Bush's presidency and the first year of Barack Obama's presidency for The Washington Times. Prior to moving to national politics, Jon worked for the Times' city desk and bureaus in Virginia and Maryland, covering local news and politics, including the D.C. sniper shootings and subsequent trial, before moving to state politics in Maryland. He and his wife have two children and live on Capitol Hill. || <a href="mailto:jw@dailycaller.com">Email Jon</a>

President Obama’s deficit commission must appear on the national stage Wednesday and announce something: it may be a proposal approved by a majority of its 18 members, but most money is on an irresolvable split that makes a final product impossible.

So while there will be some drama this week around the outcome of the panel’s deliberations – the commission won’t vote on the report until Friday – it will be in many ways anticlimactic. The real groundwork for what is to come in the months ahead – the hard work of actually making choices when spending cuts and deficit reduction become a necessity – has already been laid by the commission in the past few weeks.

Even if the panel somehow reaches an agreement on a set of proposals, Congress is not bound to take it up. So no matter what, the final report is likely to be disregarded for the most part until the nation’s leaders are forced by an emergency to look to it for answers.

All of this is what commission co-chair Alan Simpson, a former Republican senator from Wyoming, was referring to earlier in November when he said that “it won’t matter whether two of us have signed this or 14 or 18,” referring to the number over votes needed for passage out of the panel.

His prediction was that when the national debt nears the federal limit early next year, requiring Congressional action to raise the ceiling, there will be a “political bloodbath” that will send lawmakers scurrying for ideas like the ones laid out in commission proposals.

That kind of thinking is likely what prompted Simpson and fellow co-chair Erskine Bowles, a former White House chief of staff to President Bill Clinton, to release their own draft plan in early November. The week after that, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, a liberal Illinois Democrat, released her own plan. That was followed one day later by a third proposal from the Bipartisan Policy Center, spearheaded by commission member Alice Rivlin, a former budget director for Clinton, and former Republican Sen. Pete Domenici of New Mexico.

These three plans – the liberal Schakowsky plan, the center-right Rivlin/Domenici plan, and the centrist Bowles/Simpson plan – are the construction material that Simpson predicted will be picked up in the coming months if, in fact, it takes a political or economic crisis to force action in Congress. Rivlin/Domenici and Bowles/Simpson have a number of things in common, while Schakowsky’s plan is a liberal jeremiad that features a large number of new and higher taxes.

Here are the defining elements of the three potential paths forward (click here for a full comparison chart):

  • kingfish

    Since the entire deficit is owed to the Federal Reserve, a PRIVATE bank owned by 13 elite mostly European families and the Rockefellers, and it was generated UNCONSTITUTIONALLY by allowing the FED to print money rather than Treasury, the entire deficit should be WRITTEN OFF as a FRAUD against the people.

    That said, Congress NEEDS to CUT SPENDING DRASTICALLY. The tea partiers should be the people on this “commission”. Bowles and Simpson are so old and with the “in-crowd” that they are “out of touch”. If I hear one more politician say they want to cut Social Security (a small monthly stipend for the seniors who paid into it all their lives), instead of the VAST WASTEFUL GOVERNMENT AGENCIES that never go away regardless of being obsolete, I will scream!



    (1) Dept of Education (worked better at the State and County level – grades continue to deteriorate)

    (2) Homeland Security (REFUSES to do its job of securing the border or deporting illegals. Instead, spends taxpayers money suing AZ, harassing airline passengers, and sending notices to nationwide police departments that returning Vets, tea partiers, patriots, and those with anti-Obama stickers on their cars are TERRORISTS. Allows their agents to insist an airline put a panty-bomber on their airplane with no ID (Christmas bomber). FOSTERED BP poisoning of the Gulf and allowed the Coast Guard, now under their supervision, to cover up OIL, TOXIC OCEAN, TOXIC SEAFOOD, TOXIC AIR, CONTINUED COREXIT SPRAYING, and PEOPLE DYING. Napolitano should have been fired YEARS AGO!

    (3) The FBI and DOJ REFUSE to do their jobs of prosecuting Wall Street and big banks or investigate ForeclosureGate or Fannie/Freddie. The FBI covered up the Turkish Council and Israeli lesbian blackmail of Rep Jan Schakowsky that Sibel Edmonds testified about on Aug 8, 2009, and Schakowsky is STILL Chair of the House “Intelligence” Committee. The DOJ is just plain incompetent and fails to do its job altogether, despite Judicial Watch proof of coverup on the Black Panthers crime. DOJ spends taxpayer dollars suing AZ against Americans’ wishes.

    (4) Dept of Energy, which despite an oil crisis in 1972 has FAILED MISERABLY in turning the nation into an energy-efficient one in regard to housing and transportation. 100 years of future technology and medical cures for cancer THAT TAXPAYERS PAID FOR was handed over to military-industrial corporations who REFUSE TO GIVE THAT TECHNOLOGY TO THE PUBLIC. With the super-fast advancement of electronics, we should be driving spaceships by now, rather than the same oil-based cars at 25 mpg we were driving in the 50’s. Even electric cars (Volt) are old technology! Where are the air cars from Australia?

    (5) The wars should be ended and the Pentagon blasted for its use of hundreds of thousands of mercenaries like Halliburton, KBR, XE, etc. and for buying brand new trucks when a tire blows rather than stocking TIRES, and for their Israeli Pentagon comptroller losing over $4 trillion just prior to 911 (no investigation, no prosecution – definitely a coverup. The comptroller’s company manufactured remote control systems for planes), and for “losing” another $8 billion last year, and for “losing” planeloads of cash sent to Iraq, and for their ABJECT FAILURE (along with the Red Cross and Clinton/Bush fundraising — where did THAT money go?) to help Haiti in any way, shape or form. THE PENTAGON’S BUDGET SHOULD BE CUT FOR ALL THESE LOSSES IN THE FOLLOWING YEAR’S BUDGET. The Pentagon’s ever-expanding military bases, like the new one they’re planning in Columbia, should be SHUT DOWN and all those soldiers brought home to defend our own nation. Cutting over 800 bases across the globe should save PLENTY. Add all those foreign jobs, vehicles, and equipment we’re paying for at these bases.

    (6) The State Dept under Hillary should STOP building billion-dollar embassies in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and London. Who will use these embassies in the desert and in war zones? Staffs of over 2000 and security personnel of 500 for each embassy, vehicles, office supplies, gasoline, and equipment would rack up huge savings.

    (7) The Czars and their staffs should be cut. Michelle’s 27 aids should be cut. There should be a BUDGET LIMIT for presidential foreign trips.

    (8) Nancy Pelosi should NOT be given an airplane. All members of congress should fly commercial, and so should the presidential staff.

    (9) $385 billion in social services handouts to illegals PER YEAR…food stamps, SSI (social security they DIDN’T pay into), HUD housing where Obama’s illegal aunt lived, free hospitalization, medicaid, free college education under DREAM Act, free public schools, prison for 30% illegal inmates, FREE LEGAL DEFENSE, building more schools, more prisons, hiring more teachers, more policemen, more court personnel, while they commit murders and rapes of children, form criminal gangs with impunity, drive drunk killing Americans. FORGET the Dream Act! Pass “birthright” bill.

    (10) Cut Israeli foreign aid completely (this is directed to Cantor). Americans are tired of paying for the war-mongering and threats.

    (11) Combine all the competing Intelligence agencies, and cut personnel.

    (12) Abolish the CIA which for 60 years has been engaged in drug-running, gun-running, money-laundering, and assassination rings against Americans, American soldiers, both foreign and American leaders….all in the name of the American people.

    (13) Abolish IRS.

    (14) Abolish the Federal Reserve. Again, only Treasury is allowed to print currency under the constitution. The Fed’s actions get more and more OUTRAGEOUS as each day passes. They can’t even balance their books in THIS country; yet now they intend to bailout Europe??? PLU—EEEEZ! The G20 was already calling Bernanke “clueless”. Both Geithner and Bernanke are laughingstocks, both at home and abroad.

    (15) Make Congress part-time as suggested by Gov Jindal (no more than 6 months) which would cut down on the legislative PLOTS they use against the people, and would cut their expenses by HALF.

    THESE ARE JUST A “FEW” SUGGESTIONS, BUT THERE ARE THOUSANDS MORE….AND THE PEOPLE WANT SOMETHING DONE ABOUT ALL THESE ATROCITIES, rather than cutting old people’s social security. We’re VERY ANGRY that the “really greedy” like those on this committee who’ve spent a lifetime feeding at the public trough, want to cut social security from seniors who’ve already had their pension funds stolen by Congress, Treasury, the FED, and Wall Street.

    QE2 & The Great Misdiagnosis: Read Fed vs. State section

  • Tess_Comments

    The Commission was a waste of time and tax dollars.

    #1 Stop Obama from Spending.
    #2 Stop creating special panels.
    #3 Create a productive environment for Free Enterprise (Capitalism),
    #4 Forget about the “Dream Act” and Enforce Current US Immigration Laws.
    #5 Stop picking on the Middle Class. Obama Does Not Care about the Middle Class except for the fact that we pay taxes.

  • J Baustian

    Why does this article refer to three plans? The Schakowsky proposals are not a plan at all.

    Oh, and by the way kbull, Alan Simpson is right about senior citizens. Not individually, but as a class of voters who insist that their needs be met before all others. And with little concern for the long-term survival of our republic.

  • kbull

    Alan Simpson. Is this “THAT GUY” who said that today’s seniours are the greediest ever?

    1. grasping, rapacious, selfish. 1, 3. See avaricious. 2. ravenous, voracious, gluttonous, insatiable. 3. covetous, anxious.

    There was a promise… and that promise, (agreed upon retirement programs), social security benifits, medicare, I paid into it and now he says Im greedy for wanting to collect for wha I paid into! Is this “THAT GUY?”

  • Pingback: Tweets that mention Final debt commission vote anti-climactic, as three plans released already lay out way forward | The Daily Caller - Breaking News, Opinion, Research, and Entertainment -- Topsy.com