Super Committee May Not Make Deadline
The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, created by a bipartisan deal earlier this year to increase the federal debt ceiling, may not reach a deal before the legislatively mandated November 23rd deadline. The so-called “Super Committee” has held only a few public meetings, mostly to hear testimony from senior budget officials defining the deficit problem. However, the 12-member committee has been meeting in private on a regular basis and members have publicly remained optimistic for a deal.
The six Republican, six Democrat member committee must agree on a plan to cut at least $1.2 trillion from the deficit or face across-the-board budget spending cuts. Last week, Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Penn.) floated a plan with a mix of revenue enhancements and tax cuts, specifically through closing tax loopholes and permanently extending the Bush tax cuts. Democrats have a counterproposal to cut $2.3 trillion over 10 years with a mix of spending cuts and tax increases on the wealthiest Americans.
Many counties priorities could be at risk in the discussions including mandatory spending programs such as the Farm Bill and funding for Medicaid.