ATLANTA — U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss said Wednesday that the failure of a deficit-cutting supercommittee to strike a deal means the so-called Gang of Six is back in business.
The Republican senator from Georgia said Wednesday that the bipartisan group will meet after Thanksgiving to craft legislation mirroring the plan it unveiled earlier this year. That deficit-reduction plan included reforms to entitlements, deep spending cuts and additional revenues. It would have trimmed the deficit by about $4 trillion over the coming decade but failed to move.
Instead, as part of deal brokered to raise the nation’s debt ceiling, a supercommittee was established. That panel’s failure to reach agreement to cut deficits by $1.2 trillion over 10 years triggers automatic cuts to the Pentagon budget and domestic programs starting in 2013.
Chambliss said the Gang of Six — a bipartisan group of senators — has kept in contact. The group held a conference call on Tuesday to discuss a way forward. With limited time, Chambliss said, the group’s work could be important.
“Can we reform the tax code in the next 30 days? I doubt it. Can we reform Medicare and Medicaid in the next 30 days. I doubt it. But I think we have the framework for legislation that could move the debate,” Chambliss said.