The debt-ceiling deal signed into law Tuesday establishes a bipartisan, bicameral committee of 12 legislators charged with putting together a $1.5 trillion deficit-reduction package. That committee is authorized to consider cuts in every part of the federal government including Medicare, which is one area Nelson says should be left alone.
“I do not support this debt plan because it will cut Medicare, a promise we’ve made to Nebraska seniors that I intend to keep,” Nelson said prior to Tuesday’s vote.
Nelson is not the first lawmaker to criticize the panel. On Tuesday, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) called it “anti-democratic.” Supporters, however, argue that Congress would still get to vote on whatever the committee recommends.
Each party’s leaders will choose six members for the committee — three from each house of Congress.
The debt-limit agreement cuts federal deficits by nearly $1 trillion over 10 years while raising the debt ceiling by at least $2.1 trillion through 2012.