EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSFINANCIAL SUMMIT
from Eyewitness News Online
Manchin Hosts Conversation About Looming Debt Crisis
Reported by: Kennie Bass
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Kennie Bass
Reported: Sep. 10, 2012 7:25 PM EDT
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
Called "Our Finances and Our Future" and sponsored by Senator Joe Manchin it was billed as a bi-partisan conversation about the facts of the 16-trillion dollar budget deficit.
In 20101, former U.S. Senator Alan Simpson and former Clinton Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles chaired a committee offering ways to cut the debt. Their proposal failed to win a supermajority of committee members made up of senators, representatives and business people. Despite that failure the pair continues to trumpet the necessity of curbing spending and getting the country's financial house in order.
Erskine Bowles/Fmr. Clinton Chief of Staff: "You've bet the country. Because if we go over this cliff and we go back into a recession and the business community loses confidence that these guys can govern, then you're gonna see the worse fiscal crisis this country has ever faced. That's a risk I'm not willing to take."
Bowles says everyone is aware of the need to make cuts and sacrifices, but so far no one has been willing to be the first to put their needs and wants on the chopping block. Until Washington can get together and come up with some kind of solution a fiscal crisis is looming.
Alan Simpson/Former U.S. Senator: "The caucuses consist of how do we screw the other party? The caucus on Tuesday, it has nothing to do with policy, or immigration or anything of any nature but how to screw the president or the other party."
Rep. Shelley Moore Capito/(R) West Virginia: "Will we fix it? Yes, I just think it's when? That's what concerns me. Do we wait until it becomes so tough then the decisions are even tougher than they are right now?"
Despite the partisan bickering that's engulfed Washington, Senator Manchin says believes an agreement will eventually be reached.
Sen. Joe Manchin/(D) West Virginia: "We don't have a choice. I think what we heard today was the unfiltered facts of what we're dealing with financially. Every person has faced something sort of like this in their life at one time or another. There's just a lot more zeroes by this one."
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