President Seeking $4 Trillion, Comprehensive Plan
CRFB has been calling pretty much continuously for a debt reduction package which puts everything on the table, addresses entitlement spending growth, and achieves a minimum of $4 trillion in savings over the next decade. So, you can imagine what a pleasant surprise it was to see a front-page article in today's Washington Post suggesting that President Obama will call for $4 trillion in savings instead of $2.5 trillion, and will additionally call for Social Security reform.
According to the article:
As part of his pitch, Obama is proposing significant reductions in Medicare spending and for the first time is offering to tackle the rising cost of Social Security...Rather than roughly $2 trillion in savings, the White House is now seeking a plan that would slash more than $4 trillion from annual budget deficits over the next decade, stabilize borrowing, and defuse the biggest budgetary time bombs that are set to explode as the cost of health care rises and the nation’s population ages.
We are hopeful that this "go big" strategy will be successful in getting both parties to agree to a package. As CRFB president Maya MacGuineas said in our release yesterday on the negotiations:
Settling for a "down payment" and punting the real choices on structural entitlement and fundamental tax reform until after the election should not be seen as enough. We need to lift the debt ceiling immediately and at the same time put in place plans to complete a full fiscal package by the end of the year. The only excuse for waiting any longer is an unwillingness by politicians to face up to the tough fiscal choices we obviously are going to have to face. Every bit of delay creates the risk that we will wait too long.