Over the past several weeks, the bipartisan debt talks have made significant progress on a blueprint for putting America's fiscal house in order. Working together in good faith, we have found many areas of common ground and potential agreement on substantial savings. As all of us at the table said at the outset, the goal of these talks was to report our findings back to our respective leaders. The next phase is in the hands of those leaders, who need to determine the scope of an agreement that can tackle the problem and attract bipartisan support. For now the talks are in abeyance as we await that guidance. We stand ready to meet again as necessary.
As the President and I have made clear from the beginning, the only way to make sure we begin to live within our means is by coming together behind a balanced approach that finds real savings across the budget -- including domestic spending, defense spending, mandatory spending, and loopholes in the tax code. We all need to make sacrifices, and that includes the most fortunate among us.
I continue to be grateful to my fellow negotiators for taking on this formidable challenge. We have made real headway and laid the groundwork to get this done. We owe it to the American people to take every responsible step to do right by our economy and the nation's future.