Rep. Nancy Pelosi tweeted out her picks for the debt super committee that is supposed to work up a viable path toward bringing the deficit down to sustainable levels. They are:
Rep. Jim Clyburn, SC
Rep. Chris Van Hollen, MD
Rep Xavier Becerra, CA
I suppose we should take solace in the fact that Pelosi didn’t put herself on that committee. But her picks make it very clear that entitlement reform will not be on the House Democrats’ agenda at all. Clyburn can be guaranteed to take his race-baiting duties very seriously. Van Hollen is a blue-state bomb thrower. And Becerra was on Obama’s deficit commission but voted against its recommendations. There are no Blue Dogs in Pelosi’s choices, and none have a reputation for working well with Republicans. That may be among the reasons Pelosi chose them.
And am I being impolite to notice how politically-correct her choices are?
Looking at the full list, it looks like the Democrats have placed one member on the panel who might give an inch on entitlements, and that’s Max Baucus. The other five Democrats are all hard left ideologues. The Republicans have no firebrands and there are some serious fiscal minds in the group, but do have two potential compromisers, in Sen. Jon Kyl and Rep. Fred Upton. Upton, in particular, is all over the map on fiscal matters.
It looks at this point like the GOP has played a weak hand and we’re looking at major defense cuts one way or another, and no serious effort to reform entitlements. So — I’ll be the first to say it, again — we can probably expect another credit downgrade. Bankruptcy and a hollowed out military, here we come…
Update: Pelosi might have been able to make worse appointments to this stupor committee, but it’s hard to see how. Becerra is already out using his appointment as a fundraising gimmick. Just a thought: Shouldn’t you actually do the hard work of the committee before running off to brag about being on it?