By Ramsey Cox
The Senate Budget Committee Chairman said the group has come to a consensus that the deficit needs to be reduced by at least $4 trillion over the next 10 years. Conrad also said the group of bipartisan senators are using the Simpson-Bowles Fiscal Commission plan as its framework.
Conrad has expressed concern that the fiscal cliff could harm the economy in the near-term. On Monday, he said that the pressure to avoid the fiscal cliff could help prompt lawmakers to take action to avoid the situation by passing a comprehensive plan.
“As we look to avoid the fiscal cliff, it is my hope that we can replace the scheduled arbitrary, across-the-board sequester cuts and tax increases with even more savings from a balanced and comprehensive plan, like the Bowles-Simpson framework, that includes savings from entitlements, including healthcare, and tax reform that raises revenue,” Conrad said. “It is important that we adopt a comprehensive plan now, but that it be phased-in carefully so that the changes don’t worsen the fragile economic recovery.”