Ten former chairs of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers joined together for a call to action on America’s unsustainable budget. In an op-ed at Politico, they write:
As former chairmen and chairwomen of the Council of Economic Advisers, who have served in Republican and Democratic administrations, we urge that the Bowles-Simpson report, “The Moment of Truth,” be the starting point of an active legislative process that involves intense negotiations between both parties.
There are many issues on which we don’t agree. Yet we find ourselves in remarkable unanimity about the long-run federal budget deficit: It is a severe threat that calls for serious and prompt attention.
To be sure, we don’t all support every proposal here. Each one of us could probably come up with a deficit reduction plan we like better. Some of us already have. Many of us might prefer one of the comprehensive alternative proposals offered in recent months.
Yet we all strongly support prompt consideration of the commission’s proposals. The unsustainable long-run budget outlook is a growing threat to our well-being. Further stalemate and inaction would be irresponsible.
We know the measures to deal with the long-run deficit are politically difficult. The only way to accomplish them is for members of both parties to accept the political risks together. That is what the Republicans and Democrats on the commission who voted for the bipartisan proposal did.
We urge Congress and the president to do the same.
P.S. The signatories are Martin N. Baily, Martin S. Feldstein, R. Glenn Hubbard, Edward P. Lazear, N. Gregory Mankiw, Christina D. Romer, Harvey S. Rosen, Charles L. Schultze, Laura D. Tyson, and Murray L. Weidenbaum