The Deficit Super Committee Is Irrelevant

The premise of the super committee, created by a deficit reduction deal between President Obama and congressional Republicans, was that a small group of Senators and Representatives would hammer out a deficit reduction package of at least $1.2 trillion over ten years (or about $100 billion less than the budget deficit this year) or a package of sequester cuts to Medicare and defense spending would be triggered.

For those of us concerned with meaningful budget reforms, the triggered cuts are probably the best we could hope for. So, personally, I’m rooting for failure and automatic cuts. More likely the super committee will come together on some package that will ultimately be rejected by the overall Congress in which case we’ll get exactly nothing.

Remember that the super committee must make a recommendation to avoid the cuts. That recommendation need not necessarily pass Congress. And even if they arrive at nothing but gridlock, and the triggered cuts set to kick in, Republicans are already vowing to block them.

But, let’s assume the absolute best outcome in terms of actual deficit reduction (the trigger cuts take place), what sort of an impact will that have on the budget?

A very, very small one:

This whole “super committee” debacle has been a waste of our time.

Rob Port

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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