11.21.11

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Failure Of The Super Committee To Reach Agreement On A Debt And Deficit Reduction Package

The fact that a fair compromise is beyond the super committee’s reach is disappointing.  The fact that fairness could not be agreed upon as a common denominator is maddening.

Why are some so dead-set against a fair solution to these debt questions?  Yet there is an insistence not only on extending the Bush tax cuts for millionaires, but on expanding them.  We are still seeing the paralyzing and corrosive effects of a my-way-or-nothing mentality, coupled with a willingness to inflict real damage on the country if some in Congress – and some powerful influence peddlers outside of Congress – do not get their way.

It is also galling that some on the committee and in Congress refuse to deal with or even acknowledge the major role that war debt takes in the overall debt picture.  We have fought two wars now on the layaway plan, and so far only our troops and their families have been asked to pay for these wars.

Sequestering largely would not begin until 2013, so in theory there would still be things Congress could do before then.  But it is not going to get any easier next year, in the heat of a presidential campaign.

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