So the debt ceiling deal is finally passed, and America is safe once more. But now there is an unknown, nameless, bodiless “super committee” that will be making the next round of cuts (and, hopefully, rescinding some Bush era tax cuts for millionaires along the way). So who are these masked Congressfolk?
Depending on who gets the nod, we could see a whole different set of spending cuts. But House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has already promised that her nominees to the committee will not agree to any cuts to entitlement programs. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has discussed the idea of putting people in who might agree to some entitlement cuts, or at least have an “open mind,” but in light of the Republican leaders’ assurance that they will not allow “tax increases” in the next deal, either, he’s second guessing that move.
So who is being proposed, and who has already said no? Nebraska’s Democrat Sen. Ben Nelson has already said he would not serve “as a matter of principle.” Virgina Democrat Sen. Mark Warner on the other hand would love to be on the committee, worried that the makeup would otherwise be of the “ideologically rigid in both parties.”
Republican Senator John McCain is pushing Ohio Senator Rob Portman for a Republican spot, saying the former Bush Office of Management and Budget head would be perfect for the group. And some are floating the idea of giving Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords an “honorary chair” role in celebration of her return to the House during the debt vote.
Other likely nominees include Rep. Paul Ryan, Sen. Jon Kyl, and Rep. Dave Camp from the Republicans and Sen. Max Baucus and Rep. Chris Van Hollen. The GOP has said not to expect any Republican who served on the Gang of Six, showing their solid refusal already to consider compromise.
Of course, there’s one other group making big plans for the “super committee” — the lobbyists. K Street is already reminding groups worried about losing their tax loopholes that the time to rally to keep those holes open is now.
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