President Barack Obama is considering Honeywell International Inc. chief executive officer David Cote for the new federal deficit commission
U.S. President Barack Obama is considering Honeywell International Inc. chief executive officer David Cote for the new federal deficit commission, an administration official said on the condition of anonymity because no decision has been made.
Obama named former Democratic White House official Erskine Bowles and former Wyoming Republican Senator Alan Simpson to head the new 18-member bipartisan commission charged with suggesting steps to reduce the federal deficit, which was a record $1.6 trillion this year.
Obama gets to select six members of the commission, with congressional Republicans and Democrats each getting to pick six. The commission’s recommendations are due Dec. 1.
Simpson and Bowles, in an interview with Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” airing this weekend, said the panel would consider a consumption or value- added tax as a way of reducing the federal debt, as well as changes to the Social Security retirement system.
“We’re going to have to slay sacred cows,” Simpson said.
Report After Elections
The panel might release some details of its conclusions before the November congressional elections. The full report won’t be made public until after voters go to the polls.
Obama signed an executive order creating the panel on Feb. 18, after lawmakers from both parties said a special commission would be needed to tackle the problem of the budget deficit. Obama’s order can’t force Congress to vote on the recommendations.
The commission’s goal is to bring the federal budget deficit down to 3 percent of the economy by 2015, and put the budget in balance except for payments on debt. This year’s budget deficit is 10.6 percent of the economy.
Under current projections, the budget will show a deficit of $752 billion, accounting for 3.9 percent of the economy, in 2015.
“Everything’s on the table, that’s how this thing’s going to work,” Obama said after creating the commission.