Bipartisan Debt Accord Possible, Four Ex-Officials Say

Monday, 16 May 2011 02:57 PM

By Dan Weil

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Congress must summon the political courage to enact a comprehensive, long-term plan to cut the budget deficit and government debt burden, and it is capable of doing so, argue a powerful bipartisan foursome of former officials.

The group, writing on Politico, includes former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo.; Erskine Bowles, former White House chief of staff for President Bill Clinton; former Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., and Alice Rivlin, director of the Office of Management and Budget in the Clinton administration.

“Bipartisan compromise is possible if all parties develop trust and mutual respect — and are willing to put their respective sacred cows on the table,” they argue.

“Failure to reach an agreement this year is not an option. We all agree that the public debt, which could surpass the size of the economy within a decade, must be reduced. Delaying action will make the choices we face increasingly difficult and sharpen the risk of a debt crisis in which bond markets force us to take painful steps.”


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