The Return of the Washington Six

The news media, looking for any sign of breakthrough in debt ceiling talks, has managed to latch on to the much hyped return of the “Gang of Six”, with a new plan to achieve about $3.7 trillion in deficit reduction over ten years. While the Gang, with the return of Tom Coburn, has managed to generate lots of buzz about the potential for utilization of their “plan” as a way to get the debt ceiling raised and break the logjam, I would not be wagering all that much on the success of their effort.

The bi-partisan group has simply floated some new numbers, under a framework that has been loudly and consistently rejected by House Republicans. Since the Gang’s plan does include some new revenue I am at a loss to understand how it is different, as a framework, than what the President offered weeks ago. On top of that relatively simple fact we must add the negative attitudes of both Republican and Democratic leadership in the Senate towards the effort, and the plan. On that basis, and with the inability to get the framework converted to actual legislative language in anywhere near the necessary time-frame I think it is safe, for now, to not look to this proposal as one that will bring a deal forward.

So what is the way forward? The President has indicated he will veto a short term deal that does not address the long term problem. Whether even a framework can be agreed to in order to justify a signature on a short term extension is dubious in light of the stated position of the House. That leaves McConnell as the best alternative that is publicly on the table. There is plenty of talking going on, even private meetings between Speaker Boehner and Leader Pelosi. I am sure there is much we do not know about the deal potential, but it is critical that the nonsense stop here and now.

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5 Responses to The Return of the Washington Six

  1. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,

    I read your grand editorial and get exhausted. Your running a template.

    So if you read your last sentence above, I ask you which nonsense are you talking about, raising taxes or increasing spending?

    Economy still dragging along. Those 9% unemployed won’t find work.



  2. Bill Manzi says:


    The nonsense is holding the debt limit hostage. That is pure nonsense. Republicans could have had a deal along the Gang of Six line some time ago, but they can’t get out of their own way. The Gang of Six proposal has some editorial backing from the Wall Street Journal, as the details include a lowering of the top marginal rate as well as an abolition of the dreaded Alternative Minimum Tax. Tax simplification and lower marginal rates, especially the top rate, should be, along with real spending cuts, something Republicans jump on. Will they? Or will they continue with the nonsense?



  3. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,
    So your nonsense is you and your friends wish to keep spending.

    The Republicans can do as they wish if they feel it is in the best interest of the country.

    Hold your place my brave lads, we must kill the dragon to save the country.



  4. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,

    A news flash. The US Treasury figures the United states has lost 1.3 billion dollars on the Chrysler bailout (2nd in my life time). Add this to the stimulus and Obama has shown his fiscal capabilities along with G.W.

    The president and the congress are incompetent. Now we need them to get us past this debt increase issue.

    God save us.



  5. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor

    I can hardly wait for tomorrow morning and your support of the president’s need to raise more taxes when he knew that republicans won’t vote for tax increases.

    Was his petulance violating the call for civility?


    Stay cool



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