While trying to upstage today's vote on cut-cap-balance, initial reports emerging from the United States Senate point to some sort of deal being pasted together from the "Gang of Six" talks which would reduce the deficit by 3.5 trillion over ten years.
Seventy five percent would come from cuts from a broad range of programs, including defense. Twenty five percent (or 1.2 trillion) will come from additional revenue - whatever that means. Additional details are sketchy, with the exception that the CBO is supposed to score the plan as a tax cut.
I am highly skeptical of the plan and will withhold my personal judgement on the matter until I have read and analyzed it. Until then I am unsure if it is another "1986 trick" in which Democrats get tax increases and expanded government with Republicans and America taking the fall. To do so is unacceptable.
Early reports have the proposed frame work getting more than sixty votes. While that may be true, the real indicator is where the majority of the votes are coming from and what is in the actual proposal.
Many of us grass roots type are fine with a proposal that gets us eighty percent of what we want. However, it is also true that tax hikes are completely unacceptable - especially on the one trillion dollar level.
It is equally true that if such a proposal garners more Democrat than Republican votes, voters would more than likely either not participate in 2012 or go third party. This gives Democrats a free pass to win both the Presidency and perhaps recapture the House of Representatives.
It should be made clear that any such "deal" is not a pass in the 2012 elections on the subject matter and falls still short of what is needed - a balanced budget amendment coupled with entitlement reform.
However. If the proposal garners a large portion of conservatives and has actual merit, then it may at least be an initial stepping stone toward the reform we need.
Until then numbers are in and details are fleshed out I remain skeptical and would like to warn those Republicans involved in the process: Fifty three plus seven equals epic failure. Passing a legislation which restrains government spending is win.