A joint House and Senate legislative "supercommittee" announced Monday night that it would be unable to reach agreement on a plan for reining in federal spending and beginning to erase our $15 trillion national debt.
Under the Budget Control Act signed into law in August, automatic spending cuts totaling $1.2 trillion over the next decade will go into effect in January 2013 unless Congress comes up with a deficit-reduction plan by January 15, 2012. About half of the automatic cuts -- or sequestration -- would come from cutting defense and security-related spending while the remainder would come from mandatory spending programs,such as Medicaid and Medicare.
Congressman Jim Gerlach (PA-6th District) issued the following statement on the supercommittee stalemate:
"The finger-pointing and excuses coming from Congressional Democrat leaders and the President won't cut it. Not when 14 million of our neighbors and family members are out of work. Not when Washington's insatiable spending sprees have tied a $15 trillion anchor of debt around our children and grandchildren, sapping their opportunities for success. While it is disappointing that reasonable solutions eluded the House-Senate legislative committee, I remain committed to continue working with my colleagues to find common ground on proven strategies for creating jobs, empowering families and small business owners and rejuvenating our economy.
"The House has already made some progress. We have adopted several bipartisan pro-growth measures. Unfortunately, 20 of them have run into a huge roadblock in the Senate. The faster we can remove that roadblock and build on our progress, the faster we can put Americans back to work and put our fiscal house back in order."