Becerra turns to constituents for ideas on cutting deficit

Rep. Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraOvernight Regulation: Trump temporarily lifts Jones Act for Puerto Rico | Bill would exempt some banks from Dodd-Frank | Senators unveil driverless car bill Calif. AG: Trump backs down on greenhouse gas rule Overnight Energy: California cities sue oil giants over climate change MORE on Wednesday became the latest member of the deficit-slashing supercommittee to ask constituents for direct input over the Web.

The California Democrat, who's vice-chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, launched a page on his congressional website with a survey and comments section allowing the public to weigh in directly with their budget ideas.

ADVERTISEMENT
In an introduction to the survey, Becerra says the constituent input is "essential" to the success of the panel.

"After 19 years in Congress I have found that the best ideas for addressing our problems don't come from Washington, they come from the folks back home," his message reads.

"That is why I ask that you take the following survey on your budget priorities and use the comments section below to give me your ideas on ways to reduce the deficit while boosting our economy and creating jobs."

Becerra joins several other members of the panel – including Sens. Max BaucusMax Sieben BaucusBernie Sanders flexes power on single-payer ObamaCare architect supports single-payer system Trump has yet to travel west as president MORE (D-Mont.) and John KerryJohn Forbes KerryFor the sake of national security, Trump must honor the Iran deal Bernie Sanders’s 1960s worldview makes bad foreign policy DiCaprio: History will ‘vilify’ Trump for not fighting climate change MORE (D-Mass.) – in providing constituents with a place to log their thoughts as the supercommittee begins its search for at least $1.5 trillion in deficit savings over the next decade.

The practice has been controversial, however, because the websites are largely targeted towards the lawmakers' constituents. Baucus' site, for instance, allows only Montanans to register their comments.

Becerra's site allows anyone to comment, but is designed to attract constituents primarily.

The exclusivity has raised eyebrows from those already critical that the 12-member supercommittee has essentially supplanted Congress in its role as budget manager.

Becerra is advertising the survey and comment forms via Twitter and Facebook.