Sunday, August 7, 2011

A Proposal to Keep the BCA Joint Committee Moderate

The success, or failure, of the Budget Control Act's Joint Committee, which will have the resposibility to craft a $1.2 trillion deficit reduction package, will depend in large part on who is assigned to the committee.

Party leaders from both sides are facing pressure to pick party loyalists. Many Republicans don't want anyone appointed that will support revenue increases. Many Democrats don't want anyone appointed that will support reductions in the growth of entitlements. If party leaders appoint people who are unwilling to compromise, the committee will stalemate and no deal will be possible.

Here is a proposal that would help the party leaders, John Boehner, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Mitch McConnell, avoid this situation: they could each agree to choose one person from the opposite party.

Each leader chooses three members. In this scenario, each would choose two from their own party and one person from the other party. So, Boehner and McConnell would each choose two Republicans and one Democrat, and Pelosi and Reid would each choose two Democrats and one Republican, for instance.

Since Boehner and McConnell would choose centrist Democrats, and Pelosi and Reid would choose centrist Republicans, at least four of the 12 member committee would be centrists and a compromise bill would most likely emerge from negotiations.

Congress would not have to do anything to make this happen. An agreement among all four leaders is all that would be needed to make this happen.

What do you think? Please let me know in the comments below.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There are two obvious flaws to start with. Let's assume for a moment that the centrist democrats you are looking for proved they are not liberals by voting against Obamacare.
Are there any democrat senators who voted against Obamacare? No. The only Senator currently in office who did not vote for it is Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, who was not in office at the time. Blumenthal is not on any believable list of moderates. Therefore, there are no centrist democrats in the Senate.
Of the 34 dems in the house who voted against Obamacare, only 13 remain. None of the 9 freshman dems qualify as moderates. Do you really think Pelosi is going to reward those 13 who did not vote for Obamacare with any special assignments?
Don't feel bad that your idea wouldn't happen Dr. N - the Joint Committee is such a bad idea that it can not be fixed. Just ask Newt what he thinks about it. 8-)
Paul B.