Entries in Senate Budget Committee (3)


Sen. Sessions: ‘Surely We'll Be Able to Reach an Agreement’

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON -- Amid the saber-rattling on Capitol Hill, there are at least glimmers of optimism about a potential breakthrough before the midnight deadline for a government shutdown.

On Friday, Sen. Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, told ABC News that while “every billion is important” in the negotiations, both sides are making “progress” and appear likely to resolve their differences in time.

“Surely we'll be able to reach an agreement,” said Sessions, R-Ala. “But, you know, when you negotiate you don't start negotiating with yourself. You don't start backing off the numbers that you believe in. So you negotiate as hard as you can.”

Sessions also warned that plenty of funding fights are still ahead in Congress: “This is just the beginning. This is the end of this fiscal year. We've got next year's budget. We've got the debt limit we've got to work our way through. We need to continue to fight every day to bring down spending.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Sen. Sessions: ‘Can’t See How We Could Possibly Spend More Money’

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama is leavening his calls for fiscal restraint for targeted “investments” aimed at helping the economy -- including new spending on areas such as education, infrastructure, and job creation.

But the top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, Sen. Jeff Sessions, told ABC News Monday that he doesn’t foresee supporting even limited expansions in government spending.

“I can't see how we could possibly spend more money at this point,” said Sessions, R-Ala. “Start new programs perhaps -- if some were reduced or eliminated, you might reorder money, and I'd be open to that. But we'd really have to have at least, I think, this year, a 10-percent reduction in spending.”

Sessions had praise for the “Roadmap” plan put forward by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., who is his party’s choice to deliver the formal response to the president’s State of the Union address Tuesday night. That plan is particularly controversial because he proposes major restructuring the Medicare and Social Security entitlement programs.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Sen. Conrad: Extend All Tax Cuts; Time to Get 'Serious' About Deficit

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The White House conceded that in order to get the middle class tax cuts passed in the lame duck session they would need to agree to extend all of them, The Huffington Post reports.  They will also have the full support of Sen. Kent Conrad, the chairman of the Senate Budget Committee.  He told ABC News Thursday, he “certainly hope[s]” Obama and Congress can come to an agreement before everyone’s taxes go up on Dec. 31.

“I think the president’s remarks are constructive, as you know I proposed some weeks ago that we extend all the tax cuts for a period of time until we are able to fundamentally reform the tax system,” he said. “Because that is what is required in part here along with spending reductions. Both are going to have to be done if we are going to get out of this deep hole.”

The North Dakota Democrat serves on the commission for deficit reduction -- which just came out with a draft proposal that includes tax increases and spending cuts to social security and Medicare. 

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio