Larson bill to create jobs supercommittee expected this week

House Democratic Caucus Chairman John Larson (Conn.) is expected this week to introduce legislation that would create a Joint Select Committee on Job Creation, patterned after the supercommittee tasked with finding $1.5 trillion in spending cuts.

In an Aug. 8 Dear Colleague letter, Larson said the jobs supercommittee would work under the exact same terms as the spending supercommittee. The latter panel has 12 members, six from the House and six from the Senate, and must reach spending-cut recommendations by Nov. 23.

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“This would allow the Congress to simultaneously consider both our near-term (high unemployment) and our long-term (growing debt) challenges later this year, Larson wrote. Just like the Deficit Committee, all options would be on the table. We owe the American people nothing less.

Larson added that the jobs supercommittee would add a critical component to the current deficit debate and tap into the public’s demand for action from Washington.

It is not immediately clear that there is enough support in Congress to create a second supercommittee so quickly. House Republicans can be expected to oppose the proposal, as they have been arguing for several months now that they already are helping to create jobs by limiting the effects of federal regulations on business.

More broadly, members of both parties have increasingly indicated their unhappiness with the debt supercommittee, as the 12-member panel will have the authority to make recommendations that cannot be amended by other members, and must receive an up or down vote.