Aug. 2, 2011
Washington, D.C. - The following is a statement by former Senator Pete Domenici and Dr. Alice Rivlin, Co-Chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Debt Reduction Task Force, about the final passage of the bipartisan debt deal:
“We are pleased that Congress was able to forge an agreement that allowed the United States to avoid defaulting on its obligations. While the agreement in the near-term falls short of what we have urged, nevertheless we believe that three critical and useful things have emerged from this long debate.
“First, the debate has educated millions of Americans on the reality of the fiscal challenges ahead.
“Second, establishment of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction with specific duties holds out the promise of a more comprehensive and balanced fiscal plan for the future.
“Third, enforcement provisions contained in the agreement compel further Congressional action.
“We are concerned that the near-term spending cuts may further weaken the fragile economy and disappointed that the package did not extend or increase the payroll tax holiday to help ensure a stronger recovery.
“We are also disappointed that a long-term comprehensive and balanced plan failed to materialize. The agreement reached by Congress doesn’t begin the entitlement and tax reform measures everyone agrees are critical to American solvency in the future. We offer our support and that of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Debt Reduction Task Force to the Joint Select Committee as it begins its work.”
Economic Policy Project