Update: We originally reported $1 trillion in cuts, but it could be more like $2.4 trillion or more when all is said and done. Additional cuts will be required in order to allow an additional raise in the debt ceiling. The deal is not set in stone, nor has it been voted on.
Republican and Democratic leaders hammered out a deal Sunday to raise the debt ceiling but, as details emerge, it seems that the compromise will be so unpopular in Congress that members from both parties will have to come together to pass it.
Indeed, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, quoted by Reuters, said, “To pass this settlement, we’ll need the support of Democrats and Republicans in both the House and Senate. There is no way either party, in either chamber, can do this alone.”
Reid added that the compromise would be presented to the full Congress on Monday.
The Washington Post reports that “In a series of leadership huddles, conference calls and caucus meetings, top lawmakers and aides maintained cautious optimism of winning passage by Tuesday but had identified two potential obstacles: liberals in the Senate and defense hawks in the House.”
Both “obstacle” groups might oppose the measure because a trigger could force cuts to the safety net and to defense spending. Liberals also would oppose on principle any deal that required spending cuts without an increase in revenues (raising taxes and/or closing tax loopholes).
This just in: President Obama announced the deal, which proposes to cut $1 trillion over 10 years.
Judging by the video below, it looks like lawmakers and the president punted on tax hikes and cuts to Social Security and Medicare. A committee will study those decisions and certain changes may be mandatory if Congress does not act. —PZS
White House / Pete Souza
From left, John Boehner, Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama and Harry Reid throwing down in the Cabinet Room of the White House in April.