House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and a bipartisan, bicameral group of lawmakers urged the “super committee” Wednesday to surpass its $1.2 trillion goal and aim for nearly $4 trillion in savings, ensuring the 12-member panel that Congress has “got your back.”
“We want the Joint Select Committee to send us a deal that is big,” Hoyer said at Wednesday press conference. “We have the greatest chance we’ve seen in a generation to strike a bold agreement that will… spur economic recovery.”
With only one week before the 12-member panel meets its Nov. 23 deadline, this significantly large group of lawmakers not only pushed the committee to dig deeper than $1.2 trillion in savings but encouraged hiking taxes and cutting entitlements as a means to do so.
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), a member of the “Gang of Six,” said “failure can’t be an option,” and argued that these negotiations could very well serve as a proxy that will determine whether the nation’s democratic institutions are functional in the 21st century.
Republican Conference Chair Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who is vacating his position atop the Republican Party at the end of the year, argued that more revenues must be put on the table for the deficit panel to hash out a significant deal.
“This is about more than money, it’s about whether Congress can competently govern,” Alexander said. “We now have Republicans who put revenues on the table, we have Democrats on the super committee who have put entitlements on the table; Both need to put more on the table and get a result and we’re here to support them.”
Despite the strides made by both parties in considering what have been considered their “sacred cows,” the buzz surrounding the “super committee” over the past week offered little hope a deal can be struck in the next seven days.
“We’re going to support you. So get there, and we’ll have your back,” Hoyer said to the committee.