As D-Day for the deficit supercommittee to reach a deal is only five days away, it looks unlikely that an agreement will be reached.
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, told Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” on Friday that, “The word today is that they may not get to some kind of agreement.” The reason, Jordan said, is that “it would be difficult” to win passage of a deficit reduction plan that includes more taxes.
Republicans aren’t budging on including taxes in any deficit proposal while Democrats are reluctant to allow significant changes to entitlement programs.
While the supercommittee’s deadline is next Wednesday, the committee needs to have its recommendations to the Congressional Budget Office by Monday so that the CBO can “score” the recommendations.
If a deal isn’t reached an automatic trigger would enact $1.2 trillion in spending cuts divided equally between defense and non-defense discretionary programs. However programs excluded from the automatic cuts would include Social Security, Medicaid, and veterans’ benefits.
In addition, as David Tittsworth (left), executive director of the Investment Adviser Association wrote in a recent blog post for AdvisorOne, the spending cuts would not go into effect until FY 2013, “thereby punting the pain until after the 2012 election. It’s also possible that the committee may come up with a partial deal that falls short of $1.2 trillion, in which case the automatic cuts would make up the difference between $1.2 trillion and whatever cuts are approved by Congress.”
Bloomberg News reported that a bipartisan group of five senators on the supercommittee plus Democratic Rep. Chris Van Hollen met Friday morning in the Capitol to try to break the logjam.
Van Hollen, D-Md., told Bloomberg that Republicans are “dug in” on extending the George W. Bush-era tax cuts and lowering the top rates for high earners. “Negotiations are continuing, but we’ve made it clear that that doesn’t meet the test of balance.”
Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, said Friday that all 12 Democratic and Republican negotiators on the super committee “would huddle for the second straight day in an effort to jump-start stalled deficit reduction talks,” according to Roll Call.
Hensarling, who co-chairs the Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction, said the panel would meet again today “to try to find common ground,” Roll Call reported. He also warned, “If agreement is not found today, members of the Joint Select Committee, Democrats and Republicans, will gather through the weekend.”
While the Senate is in session next week, the House is not. However, members of the supercommittee will likely be working to hammer out a deal.