Entries in Sen. Alan Simpson (2)


Deficit Commission Co-Chair Decries Lawmakers' Inability to Make Deal

The White House/Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- Former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo., the GOP co-chair of President Obama's deficit commission, told ABC News that "The American people are disgusted at both parties" for not being able to agree on a measure to reduce the deficit.

"Everybody says, 'What in the hell is going on?'" Simpson said.  "The American people are smarter than their politicians."
He also expressed misgivings about his perception that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., undermined Speaker John Boehner's ability to compromise with Democrats, saying, "The stuff that’s going on in my party, where the -- pettiness overcomes the patriotism -- it’s just disgusting to me."

Simpson criticized anti-tax activist Grover Norquist and the AARP as preventing progress.

"You cant get there with this continual business of don’t touch this and don’t touch that," he said.

He reiterated what the Deficit Commission plan spelled out: that the only way to arrive at a serious attempt at deficit reform is with a combination of cuts to entitlement programs and new taxes.

"Reagan raised taxes," Simpson said.  "We’ve never had less revenue to run this country since the Korean war."

Contrary to some Republicans who've expressed skepticism about the Aug. 2 default date, Simpson said Treasury Secretary "Tim Geithner ain't fooling."

"This is turning into a laugh except there’s nothing funny about it," he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Obama Calls To 'Start Moving Rapidly' on Deficit Reform 

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama sat down in the Oval Office with the co-chairs of the Fiscal Commission, one day after releasing his vision for deficit reform for the country. The president said the commission, headed by former Republican Sen. Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles, former White House chief of staff to Bill Clinton, helped  “shape” his thinking  in forming the plan to cut $4 billion from the deficit.

The president reaffirmed that he will use the tax code, “and find a way to work together to not only simplify and make the tax system fairer, but also that we use it as a tool” to help achieve the deficit goals.

The president said it is “not appropriate” to ask for sacrifices “from everybody except for the two percent of Americans who are doing best.”

Not directly mentioning the Republican criticism of his plan, the president said that “no matter how much we spend time debating the issues, at some point we’re going to have to come together as Americans.”

The president said they should “start moving rapidly to get some of these major issues resolved.”

Vice President Biden, who was also in the room, will head up the effort, the president said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio