Support for Go Big Grows as Super Committee Deadline Nears


CEOs, Former Elected Officials and Policy Experts Call on Congress to Act

"To put the U.S. on a path towards fiscal sustainability requires that we 'go big'. There is no other option. We can do it now, or we can do it later, but it must be done, and the sooner we do it, the easier -- economically, socially, fiscally, and politically -- it will be."

Barry Anderson, Former Acting Director, Congressional Budget Office

"The events in Europe demonstrate the importance of a true solution -- not a partial one -- to our own corrosive deficit and debt path. It is time for the Super Committee to go big."

Roger Altman, Founder and Chairman, Evercore Partners

"The U.S. is on a path toward spending a trillion dollars annually in interest on our national debt in 10 years. This is not how a great nation behaves. The Super Committee should target a deficit reduction plan of at least $4 trillion, similar to the plan laid out in the Simpson-Bowles Commission. The $1.2 trillion target just isn't enough. We need to 'go big' now in order to reassure the business community and the financial markets, restore public confidence, and create the foundation for long-term economic growth and prosperity. The faster we act, the less painful it will be for everyone."

Dave Cote, Chairman & CEO, Honeywell International; Former Member, National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform

"If we GO BIG now, we'll save our children from having to pay off the largest public debt since World War II on top of their student loans."

Peter Davis, President, Davis Capital Investment Ideas

"If the 'Super Committee' fails to reach consensus, or if it recommends an anemic package of savings, there is no reason to think that anything more will get done before the 2012 election. By then, our country's financial situation may be beyond redemption. The time to make the hard choices -- and the right choices -- is now."

John Endean, President, American Business Conference

"The Super Committee's $1.2 trillion mandate is not nearly enough to ensure that this country is on stable fiscal footing. The Super Committee has a historic chance to 'go big' in order to put the United States on a sustainable budgetary path, and the time to act is now."

The Honorable Vic Fazio, Former Member of Congress

"Today's bi-partisan, bi-cameral request by about 100 members of Congress to expand its fiscal recommendation far beyond its modest target deserves the close attention of the Joint Select (Super) Committee. A saving of $1.2 trillion will not stabilize the Debt Ratio. Partial solutions only make the total solution more difficult. 'Go big' is more than a slogan. It's an immediate necessity."

The Honorable William Frenzel, Former Ranking Member, House Budget Committee; Co-Chair, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

"The current financial crisis in Europe reminds us -- if we need reminding -- of the urgency of getting our own budget house in order."

The Honorable Bill Gradison, Former Ranking Member, House Budget Committee

"The Super Committee, because of its unique and broad authority, may well be the last best chance to do something big and constructive to address our massive debt problem and put the nation back on a fiscally sound path. It not can pass on this responsibility and it must go well beyond its charge of 1.2 trillion if its efforts are to be seen by the American people as effective and successful. It must go 'big' or America's future and our children's chance for prosperity will be the losers."

The Honorable Judd Gregg, Former Chairman, Senate Budget Committee

"A large and well-designed fiscal consolidation plan is exactly the right medicine for our floundering economy. Congress must not waste this golden opportunity to restore economic order."

Kevin Hassett, Senior Fellow and Director of Economic Policy Studies, American Enterprise Institute

"It's not higher math -- a $15 trillion annual U.S. economy for 10 years is $150 trillion. Even if the Select Committee could achieve $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction over the next 10 years, that would be only 1% of GDP. Hardly enough to reduce the unsustainable debt load that will continue to be placed on families, children and our country's future. They need to do more, the issue will not go away."

Bill Hoagland, Former Staff Director, Senate Budget Committee

"If the Super Committee wants to make its mark in history, it has to be bold, visionary and 'go big.' Anything less than $4 trillion in deficit reduction will leave us facing ever rising debt ratios, borrowing costs, and slower economic growth. The American people expect Congress to resolve this fiscal crisis. They must not fail."

The Honorable Jim Kolbe, Former Member of Congress, Appropriations and Budget Committees

"The Super Committee has an unprecedented opportunity to take a critical and urgent step to lead our nation out of the debt crisis. We must only read the headlines from Europe to realize that we must do more than the bare minimum -- by achieving $4 trillion in saving. This opportunity will not come again and time is of the essence."

Olivia S. Mitchell, Economist

"The next seven days will have a significant impact on our nation's fiscal health. This is not a problem with a simple or easy solution, but what is clear is that the super committee's $1.2 trillion mandate is not nearly enough to right our fiscal ship. I urge the super committee members to find a way to 'go big' and strike a deal that brings our debt down to a manageable and sustainable level."

The Honorable James Nussle, Former Director Office of Management and Budget; Former Chairman, House Budget Committee

"It is urgent that the Super Committee members step up to the enormous responsibility they accepted when agreeing to serve. We must have a comprehensive, enforceable, 'go big' solution to our unsustainable fiscal dilemma, and we don't have much time."

Marne Obernauer, Jr., Chairman, Beverage Distributors Co.

"The Super Committee has a historic opportunity to get the budget on a sustainable path and avoid a debt crisis. That will require going beyond the minimum $1.2 trillion. They should use a two-stage process to achieve $4-5 trillion in savings by slowing the growth of Medicare and raising revenue from a more pro-growth tax code."

Dr. Alice Rivlin, Former Director, Congressional Budget Office; Former Director, Office of Management and Budget; Former Member, National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform

"Big changes are economically necessary and hence are inevitable. The Super Committee must show leadership now to ensure Congress does not miss this opportunity to craft thoughtful and well-balanced policy change -- rather than allow brute force, indiscriminate, and potentially economically threatening spending cuts be imposed on our nation by default."

Dr. Diane Lim Rogers, Chief Economist, The Concord Coalition

"Addressing the fiscal challenge would mean a better economic future and provide certainty on taxes and spending that would spur jobs and growth today. The Super Committee should take this opportunity to go big."

Dr. Phillip Swagel, Professor, University of Maryland; Former Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy, Treasury Department, 2006-2009

"The growing support from members of both parties in the House and Senate for 'going big' sends a strong message to the Select Committee that they are down to the lick log. Congress must not miss this opportunity to put our Nation's fiscal house in order. With 100+ members leading there is no excuse whatsoever for not getting the job done!"

The Honorable Charlie Stenholm, Former Member of Congress; Co-Chair, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

"Why 'Go Big?' Let's be honest. Anything Congress does to get the budget into greater balance today requires taking something away from someone, either through spending cuts or tax increases. That means that there is a political price to be paid for responsibility, and interest groups will pounce on anything meaningful that is done. But that's true regardless of size. So Congress may as well get accomplish something substantial and real -- get us a lot closer to long-term sustainability, fix some of our spending and tax systems, reduce our dependence upon foreign countries who often oppose our values. Therefore, 'Going Big' is not just good for the country; politically it's the smartest option."

C. Eugene Steuerle, Institute Fellow and Richard B. Fisher Chair, Urban Institute

"Counterintuitive as it may seem, when it comes to deficit reduction, bigger is not only better, it's easier. 'Fairness' in these debates has none of the qualitative aspects that Webster ascribes to the word. In deficit reduction, 'fairness' means that the pain is felt by everyone, and so the bigger the savings, the more fair it will seem. It's time for the Super Committee to 'go big.'"

Carol Cox Wait, Former President, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

"The time for decision is rapidly approaching. The so-called Super Committee should 'go big' either now or through recommending a two-step process that will achieve the same result by no later than the end of 2013. If they don't, the Committee's efforts will be viewed as another failure by the Congress to make tough fiscal choices."

The Honorable David Walker, Former Comptroller General of the United States

"President Reagan often said that the shortest time period is for a political mandate in Washington. The Super Committee has been given a mandate with the benefit of an expedited process and this may not happen again."

"Our founding fathers would have jumped at a challenge to solve the fiscal problems that we have today. The Super Committee should not fail us because of ideology, the upcoming election, etc. and limit themselves to only the $1.5T in savings or the sequester -- that will be a failure and will not solve our problem. Our founding fathers would be ashamed if that happens."

The Honorable Joseph R. Wright, Jr., Former Director, Office of Management and Budget