Tags: debt | reduction | Boehner | Obama

Republican, Democratic Leaders Push to Tackle Debt

Wednesday, 17 Aug 2011 11:06 AM

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Top Republican and Democratic congressional leaders have written competing opinion pieces expressing a desire to get to work constructing the next debt reduction.

In a USA Today Op-Ed, House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, both of Ohio, pressed President Barack Obama on the issue.

“Time and time again, we have reached out to President Obama in the hope that he would finally be ready to do what is needed to solve our debt crisis and tackle America’s job crisis,” they write. “The offer still stands. Let’s get to work.”

The three Senate Democrats on the deficit reduction supercommittee — Max Baucus of Montana, John Kerry of Massachusetts, and Patty Murray of Washington — expressed optimism in their Wall Street Journal piece that bipartisan compromise can be reached.

They write that they are “ready to get to work with our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to report out a balanced plan, with the shared sacrifices this moment requires.”

“The moment demands leadership, but it also demands consensus,” the Democrats write. “We know that each of us comes into this committee with clear ideas on the issues and what our priorities are for our nation. But a solution can only be found by merging these priorities across party lines and finding a solution that works for the American people.”

Meanwhile, Boehner and Cantor defended the Republicans’ original debt reduction plan, saying, “There’s certainly no victory lap to be taken, especially when more could have been done.”

“Lawmakers of both parties on the newly formed joint select committee will be in a position to make tough choices to rein in the mandatory and entitlement spending that is driving our long-term debt,” Boehner and Cantor write. “We believe this work can be done without imposing job-crushing tax increases. We should be able to move forward on the areas in which we agree on the former, without tying them to areas of disagreement — such as the latter.”

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