The White House press secretary, Jay Carney, pointedly noted that the responsibility for getting a deal belonged to Congress, not the White House. First Blamer
“I find it extraordinary that there would be a committee with such an important mission as finding a way to provide fiscal sanity in America, and with the penalty, if that fiscal sanity is not found, of a $600 billion cut to our military,” Mr. Romney said.
In a speech Monday, Newt Gingrich, another Republican candidate for president, called the failure of the committee “good for America.”
“We need to more appropriately allocate spending reductions,” Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, said in an interview. “Congress could alter the sequestration. I am hoping for that.”
As he left the meeting, Senator Max Baucus, Democrat of Montana and chairman of the Finance Committee, said: “We are working as hard as we can. We are continuing to meet.”
Senator Baucus said, “Both sides are feeling angst, more angst, at the possibility of no agreement, so they should work harder and more creatively.”
With the apparent collapse of the deficit reduction committee, Republicans in Congress were looking for other ways to rein in federal spending. Some House Republicans have discussed the possibility of seeking a vote on deficit reduction proposals advanced in the last month by Republican members of the committee. While such proposals would have no future in the Senate, they would give House Republicans an opportunity to show their commitment to fiscal restraint.
In Europe, on the other hand, interest rates on government bonds in the countries seen as most troubled, Italy and Spain, rose to near record levels, and Moody’s Investors Service warned that France’s top credit rating was vulnerable.
|Mr. Van Hollen|
Trying to sound hopeful, Mr. Van Hollen, a Democratic member of the panel, emerged from the Kerry-Kyl meeting on Monday and said, “We’re just having last-minute discussions.”
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has warned of devastating consequences. Republicans and Democrats on the super-committee have been stuck in familiar territory, unable to find agreement on tax hikes or cuts in Social Security and Medicare.