Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., said the nation needs to enact a comprehensive, long-term plan to tackle the national debt to avoid the “inevitable catastrophe” if nothing is done.
The Senate Budget Committee held a hearing today that included testimony from former Senate Budget Committee Chairman Pete Domenici and Director of the Office of Management and Budget Alice Rivlin on a bipartisan plan to reduce the nation’s debt.
The plan was developed by a task force of the Bipartisan Policy Center, a Washington, D.C., organization that seeks to develop and promote compromise solutions to important problems.
The Budget Committee, which Conrad serves on as chairman, also reviewed a similar proposal by the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform that would cut the national debt by $4 trillion over 10 years.
In a written statement, Conrad said it’s important for national leaders to “act swifly and with purpose to put our nation on a more sustainable fiscal path.”
“Though I did not like every element of the recommendations of the President’s Bipartisan Fiscal Commission, I was proud to support it,” he wrote. “And I think the work done by the Rivlin-Domenici committee was equally serious and deserving of our consideration.”
Conrad said both plans call for spending cuts and caps, reforming entitlement programs and overhauling the nation’s tax system.
He said the nation’s debt “dwarfs almost every other challenge our nation faces today.”
“History will not be kind to those who use this for political gain, rather than coming together on a solution,” he wrote.